US: More Than Half of LGBTQ Youth Have an Eating Disorder, Survey Shows

Although it’s true that eating disorders and body image issues can affect people from all kinds of backgrounds, regardless of gender, sexuality, class, race, or physical ability, it’s often been thought of as solely a women’s issue. With public figures like Adam Rippon and Mina Gerges taking a stand and showing that body image issues and eating disorders don’t discriminate, the conversation is expanding.

Now, The Trevor Project, the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA), and Reasons Eating Disorder Center have partnered in a survey that explores the prevalence of eatings disorders in young LGBTQ people from varied backgrounds. Researchers found that more than half of LGBTQ young people surveyed have been diagnosed with an eating disorder, with transgender young people being at a disproportionate risk.

The survey, which primarily focused on "the relationships between sexual orientation, gender identity, eating disorders and suicidal ideation," is the first national survey of LGBTQ youth that specifically hones in on these issues. The survey was made available to more than 1,000 LGBTQ youth in the U.S. between the ages of 13 and 24 years old who self-identify as LGBTQ. According to the NEDA website, those who conducted the study hope it can “mend the gap in research about eating disorders and mental health in the LGBTQ+ community and provide critical information on the needs of LGBTQ+ youth that can be provided to health care providers, caretakers, and educators.” Read more via Teen Vogue