Hello everyone! We are at the International Conference on Eating Disorders (ICED), and I thought it would be fun to write about a few of the highlights from today.
Keynote Address: The keynote speaker was Dr. Cindy Bulik. Her talk focused on strategies for practicing engaged science. She emphasized the importance of getting outside of your lab and connecting with the community, people suffering from eating disorders, their families, and people with areas of expertise outside of psychology. Her inspiring message was that engaged science builds strong teams that are capable of greater advancement in the prevention and treatment of eating disorders.
Examining Food & Mood: Affect, Eating Behavior and Implications for Treatment in Anorexia Nervosa: This was an excellent workshop session examining the roles of mood and habit in eating disorders. Fargo was well-represented by Drs. Jason Lavender and Steve Wonderlich. They introduced novel research-based ideas about maintenance factors in eating disorders. They identified negative mood reduction, emotion regulation skill acquisition, and interventions that disrupt automatic responses to cues as promising areas for intervention.
Commonalities and Differences in the Treatment of Eating Disorders across Diverse Populations: Considering Transcultural Issues: A major priority in the United States is to reduce health disparities, including those related to mental health. This session examined research and case examples for methods of reducing barriers to treatment access, treatment retention, and treatment effectiveness. Several useful suggestions included targeting acculturative stress, recruiting a more diverse population of clinicians into the field, and culturally-tailoring treatment. It was also wonderful to reconnect with Dr. Marisol Perez, who supervised my undergraduate honors thesis, which was relevant to this very topic!
A Test of an Interactive Model of Binge Eating among Undergraduate Men: Our very own Allison Minnich presented her research from her Master’s thesis during the poster session. She found that college men with high levels of perfectionism, high levels of body dissatisfaction, and low levels of self-esteem were most likely to engage in binge eating in a longitudinal study. She did an outstanding job representing the lab and explaining the research!
In between sessions, we had an opportunity to check out Cheers for lunch (Frasier is one of my all-time favorite TV characters) and see the bench that Robin Williams and Matt Damon sat on in Good Will Hunting (which is one of my favorite movies).