It’s Pride Month. Many LGBTQ+ individuals face unique challenges that put them at greater risk of developing an eating disorder.
Just Like Us, a charity that supports young LGBTQ+ people, recently found that LGBTQ+ young people are *3x more likely* to have an eating disorder.
1 in 5 LGBTQ+ young people (20%) has experienced or is currently experiencing an eating disorder, compared to just 7% of non-LGBTQ+ young people.
Prominent mental health campaigner, James Downs, recently wrote in The Independent:
“Studies have consistently shown that LGBTQ+ adults and adolescents are at greater risk of developing eating disorders than their heterosexual and cisgender counterparts, but this is rarely considered in the conversation around eating disorders…
Experiences of discrimination, bullying, and pressures to conform to normative expressions of gender have been linked to increased risk of developing eating disorders.”
Recognising and raising awareness of the diversity within eating disorders is not limited to one month of the year.
We must continually challenge myths and stigma to allow for earlier intervention and specialist support that responds to the unique experiences and barriers of all individuals.