In 2022, we will offer two bursaries with a value of $500 each—one bursary will support education/professional development in the field of eating disorders, and one bursary will support a research project in eating disorders. Further details about these bursary opportunities are available at here.
Abbigail Kinnear: Recipient of the 2021 EDAC-ATAC Research Bursary
The EDAC-ATAC Research Bursary supported remuneration of participants who took part in Abbigail’s research. Abbigail’s research focuses on understanding the function of eating disorder symptoms. Abbigail shared a summary of her project:
One method of improving treatment outcomes in individuals with eating disorders (EDs) may be to understand and target individual’s motives for engaging in ED behaviours – or the functions of EDs. Given the importance of assessing the functions of EDs and the lack of a comprehensive and valid assessment tool, the purpose of this research is to develop and validate a measure of ED functions. Using interviews with individuals who engage in ED behaviours and clinicians who treat EDs, we drafted a measure to assess four main functions of EDs: 1) alleviating shape, weight, and eating concerns; 2) regulating emotions; 3) regulating one’s self-concept; and 4) regulating relationships/communicating with others. Participants who engage in ED behaviours then completed this measure in an online study so that we can test the structure of this measure as well as the performance of measure items. Results of this study will support the construct validity of the measure. Once officially validated, this ED functions measure may be used to facilitate individualized treatment conceptualizations and inform treatment decisions for those with EDs.
Ali Eberhardt: Recipient of the 2021 EDAC-ATAC Professional Development Bursary
I was awarded a $500 Professional Development Bursary this year by the Eating Disorders Association of Canada (EDAC-ATAC) to put towards learning and knowledge translation related to weight inclusive care, anti-diet education and Health at Every Size. Upon receiving these funds I collaborated with the team of Registered Dietitians I work with in the Provincial Adult Tertiary Specialized Eating Disorders Program at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, BC to determine best use of this bursary to put towards continuing education/training workshops in these topics.
To begin with, I registered as a member of the Association for Size Diversity and Health which is a non-profit organization with international membership committed to the practice of HAES principles. The membership provides ongoing opportunities for development such as a workshop I attended in December called “Let’s Discuss the Centrality of “Health” in Health at Every Size®” as well as access to education resources and much more. I also registered and participated in “Master Your Anti-Diet Message” a communication masterclass with Registered Dietitian Christy Harrison. This workshop is for health care providers to unlearn potentially triggering diet culture language and help approach advocacy for our patients and clients with safe inclusive messaging.
With the remaining funds, we decided to start an Anti-Diet/Weight Inclusive Care Educational Library for our program so that our colleagues can borrow books and educational resources to support their learning into weight neutral and inclusive care. The first 3 books in our library are:
Fearing the Black Body: The racial origins of fat phobia by Sabrina Strings
Anti-Diet: Reclaim your time, money, well-being and happiness through Intuitive Eating by Christy Harrison, RD
The Intuitive Eating Workbook: 10 principles for nourishing a healthy relationship with food by Evelyn Tribole, RD & Elyse Resch, RD
I am so very grateful for this award which allowed access to communities and educational materials that have deepened my understanding and comfort working from a weight neutral HAES lens. The work of unlearning internalized weight stigma has just begun and I am grateful to EDAC-ATAC for their support of me on this journey.