February 22-28 is Eating Disorder Awareness Week
From their website:
———————BEAT – Beating Eating Disorders———————
We are pleased to announce that in 2016, Beat will be focussing on the topic of ‘Eating disorders in the workplace’ during Eating Disorders Awareness Week.
A really important issue, we will be highlighting why it is important that individuals affected by eating disorders are supported at work and how this can best be facilitated by employers.
Why not consider coupling BEAT Week with Student Volunteering Week?
You might want to go to a local school and talk to students about eating disorders.
Or maybe you could arrange a food drive to donate to a local Food Bank (on Oxford Road)?
I personally think eating and dietary health is a huge concern for nurses/student nurses.
Our work schedules and long shifts can make it very difficult to eat regular, well balanced meals. Many of us resort to less healthy processed and pre-packaged foods which come with a raft of preservatives, hidden calories and poorly balanced macronutrients. That lack of balance leads to hunger and snacking and I know I make terribly unhealthy food choices when I’m hungry. Also, the last thing I want to do at the end of a 12 hour shift is cook a balanced meal from fresh ingredients before I start my next shift at 7.30am the next day!
Add to that the fact that we work in a profession that requires us to promote health and healthy eating – something that could make us feel like hypocrites when talking to patients.
I’ve stopped counting the number of diet conversations that happen every break time in the staff room. One person is going carb-free, another is doing a 5:2 fasting diet and then someone will enter and share how they were trying to diet but it all collapsed after a week.
Weight and eating healthy is something we all struggle with as a society and it brings with it challenging self-esteem and emotional struggles that can drain your energy without you realising it. Pile messages from the media on top of my already shaky body-confidence and suddenly those biscuits someone brought into the staff room look like just the answer to all my stress and anxiety.
Support each other – consider starting a drive at work to encourage everyone to bring in healthy snacks. Maybe share recipe and food preparation tips such as healthy slow-cooker recipes that can make enough for a few meals at a time.
Remember to keep in mind the fact that eating disorders cover a wide range of any concerns surrounding diet and the emotional and physical results of our choices.