Over a million people in the country have suffered from eating disorders at some point in their life. That’s why Cat believes investing in early intervention and prevention is essential for individuals to have a long lasting recovery.
Cat is supporting the ‘Dump The Scales’ campaign which was started after one young woman was denied services because she wasn’t ‘thin’ enough.
“Many people with eating disorders are not properly diagnosed because they’re told by GPs they’re not underweight or overweight enough,” explained Cat. “This only makes the problem worse. People with eating disorders are getting an unfair deal in society. It’s not right that people are turned away from support because GP’s simply use our Body Mass Index (BMI) as a way of determining whether someone needs help.”
This is what happened to Hope Virgo who started the ‘Dump The Scales’ campaign. She was refused help on the grounds that her BMI was in a ‘healthy range’. “This was devastating to me when I relapsed from anorexia,” said Hope. “This happens every day to thousands of people, leaving them feeling suicidal, alone and without help. It isn’t right that we live in a society which is so fixated on weight and BMI. Eating disorders are not about weight and therefore should not be judged on this. Turning someone away from treatment not only impacts the person suffering but also those around them. The symptoms have long term impacts on the individual impacting all aspects of life which means that businesses are also effected.”
Cat is calling on the Government to implement the NICE Guidelines around the diagnosis of Eating Disorders, and therefore to not measure the BMI of those seeking treatment.