Preventing Eating Disorders among Vulnerable Populations
There is a long-standing belief among the general public and clinicians that eating disorders are almost exclusively a female problem. However, males also experience eating disorders and may constitute up to 40% of individuals with eating issues. Among males, sexual minorities (i.e., gay, bisexual and non-heterosexual identified individuals) are one of the most vulnerable groups for developing eating disorders, due in large part to the stressors they experiences as minority individuals in a heterosexist society.
Noting a lack of research on eating disorder prevention in this population, psychologist Aaron Blashill is testing a promising intervention that is brief in duration, peer-led and group-based, which could potentially be implemented in community health centers across the country.
Dr. Blashill directs SDSU’s Body Image, Sexuality and Health Lab. His work is supported by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (5R01MD012698-04).