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Over Half of LGBTQ Youth in New National Survey Have Been Diagnosed With Eating Disorders

NEW YORK CITY — Feb. 28, 2018

****FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE****

A new national survey of LGBTQ youth found that a majority of those surveyed have been diagnosed with an eating disorder. Even more shocking, half of the LGBTQ youth surveyed who have not been diagnosed suspect they have an eating disorder.

The disturbing results were part of a new national survey, designed to better understand how LGBTQ youth are affected by eating disorders, and was conducted by The Trevor Project, the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA)  and Reasons Eating Disorder Center. The results were released in conjunction with National Eating Disorders Association Awareness Week, held this year between Feb. 26 and March 4 with the theme “Let’s Get Real.”

The results illustrate the need for increased support for this community. Of the LGBTQ youth surveyed, 54% of the participants indicated that they had already been diagnosed with an eating disorder. Of those diagnosed with an eating disorder, 58% have considered suicide.

“We were stunned by these results,” said Amit Paley, The Trevor Project’s CEO and Executive Director. “We need to do far more to help the alarming number of LGBTQ youth living with eating disorders and struggling with thoughts of suicide. We are grateful to partner with NEDA and Reasons Eating Disorder Center to shed light on this public health crisis and help save more LGBTQ lives.”

“We are honored to partner with the Trevor Project on this critical survey,” said Claire Mysko, CEO of NEDA. “The results make it clear that troubling numbers of LGBTQ youth are affected by eating disorders and self-harm. Together, we are working to raise awareness and put live-saving resources into the hands of those in need. It’s time to get real about these issues and ensure that everyone has access to the support they deserve.”

The first-of-its-kind survey includes a sample of 1,305 self-identified LGBTQ youth ages 13 to 24 from across the country. The report shows:

  • 54% of LGBTQ youth respondents reported having been diagnosed with an eating disorder compared to 5% of the heterosexual peers.
  • Trans youth who identify as straight are the most at risk, with 71% of those having been diagnosed with an eating disorder, anorexia being the most common.
  • There is a dangerous overlap in the consideration of suicide and eating disorders, with 58% of LGBTQ youth respondents who have been diagnosed with an eating disorder having considered suicide.

Stigma and stereotypes, especially amongst LGBTQ youth, make this a hard issue for some to talk about and seek help for. The goal of NEDAwareness Week 2018 is to bust myths, elevate marginalized voices, and reach those in need with appropriate support and resources.

Read the full results on The Trevor Project website here: https://www.thetrevorproject.org/resources/eating-disorders-among-lgbtq-youth/

Learn more about NEDAwareness Week: www.NEDAwareness.org

ABOUT THE TREVOR PROJECT

The Trevor Project is the leading and only accredited national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people under the age of 25. The Trevor Project offers a suite of crisis intervention and suicide prevention programs, including TrevorLifelineTrevorText, and TrevorChat as well as a peer-to-peer social network support for LGBTQ young people under the age of 25, TrevorSpace. Trevor also offers an education program with resources for youth-serving adults and organizations, a legislative advocacy department fighting for pro-LGBTQ legislation and against anti-LGBTQ rhetoric/policy positions, and conducts research to discover the most effective means to help young LGBTQ people in crisis and end suicide. If you or someone you know is feeling hopeless or suicidal, our Trevor Lifeline crisis counselors are available 24/7/365 at 1-866-488-7386. www.TheTrevorProject.org

ABOUT THE NATIONAL EATING DISORDERS ASSOCIATION

The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA), headquartered in New York City, is the leading U.S. non-profit organization supporting individuals and families affected by eating disorders. NEDA serves as a catalyst for prevention, cures and access to quality care. Each year, NEDA helps millions of people across the country find information and appropriate treatment resources through its toll-free, live helpline, its many outreach programs and website. NEDA advocates for advancements in the field and envisions a world without eating disorders.

For more information or to chat with a trained volunteer, visit www.MyNEDA.org

Or contact NEDA’s Live Helpline @ 800-931-2237
Monday–Thursday, 9am–9pm (EST) / Friday, 9am–5pm (EST)
In a crisis? Text NEDA to 741741; 24 hours a day/seven days a week

ABOUT REASONS EATING DISORDER CENTER

Reasons Eating Disorder Center, located in Los Angeles, California, offers eating disorder treatment programs for adolescents and adults who suffer from Anorexia, Bulimia, Binge-Eating, ARFID, and other related forms of disordered eating. We offer inpatient, residential, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient programs for the treatment of eating disorders. We are a gender inclusive treatment program.

CONTACTS

Calvin Stowell – [email protected]

Greenleaf & Associates — 323-660-5800

Vicki Greenleaf — [email protected]

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