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THE GATEWAY * volume C number I 


Eating disorder centre opens on Whyte 


SEAN STEELS 

Senior News Editor 


Often portrayed as solely a sickness of young, 
self-conscious women, eating disorders have 
grown along with the media and cultural 
pressures to encompass a wider distribution 
oi the population than ever before, affecting 
men. women, young, and old. 

Bin those struggling with the burden of dis¬ 
ordered eating will have one more option for 
help this September thanks to the presence 
of Me Without Measure (MWM): an Eating 
Disorder Organization on Whyte Avenue and 
104 Street. 

The location will serve as a hub for aware¬ 
ness related initiatives and support groups — 
one for those suffering from eating disorders, 
the other for friends and family members of 
those afflicted, explained Maggie Brennan, 
Program Director of MWM and masters stu¬ 
dent of counseling psychology at the University 
of Alberta. 

Support group sessions, which are free and 
fully confidential, will focus on how to equip 
participants with the tools to battle the over- 
idealized false reality presented in mass media, 
Brennan described. 

"We try to help |hti idpants develop a critical 
mind, question what they’re seeing, and educate 
people about how photos are touched up in mag¬ 
azines and how they're used to sell you things. 
Big business wants you to feel bad because then 


you need their product." she said. 

“it all boils down to how you feel about 
your Ixxly. and 90 per cent of women and 50 
per cent of men just don't feel very good about 
their bodies." 

The origin of disordered earing, often 
regardless of gender or background, lies in 
self-perception and body image, explained 
Helen Vallianatos. who is an assistant profes¬ 
sor in the University of Alberta's Department 
of Anthropology and board director at the 
MWM. Vallianatos specializes in how social 
determinants shape health. 

“There aren’t uniform ideals for what a 
beautiful body is. fin North America] you 
could argue that lean, muscular bodies are the 
beauty ideal for men and women.” she said. 

“We need to introduce people to the idea 
that a healthy body is not any particular body 
size and that people have different norms. We 
need to foster body awareness and acceptance 
of health at any size." 

In addition to support groups. MWM also 
plans to divert time and resources towards 
expanding the canon of literature around 
eating disorders and body image. In the 
coming year, graduate students working 
under Vallianatos will get a chance to perform 
research at the MWM. 

In the opinion of Peggy Szucs. MWM's 
Executive Director, an increase in the amount 
of research done on eating disorders has been 
a long time coming. 



BUILDING CONFIDENCE MWM staff hope that 
the centre will shed light on eating disorders. 


"Statistics in Canada and the United States: 
there are practically none that are recent and 
relevant.” she said, adding that because so 
many eating disorders go undiagnosed and 
because they can be so hard to identify, a real¬ 
istic estimation of how many are affected is 
impossible. 

“Someone who is bulimic might not have 
physical signs as opposed to an anorexic, 
and people affected by something that hasn't 
entered the health care dictionary yet, like big- 
orexia — obsessive compulsive body-building 
— would almost never be thought of as having 
body image issues.” 

Another area of focus for the MWM will be 
developing a support group specifically targeting 
men with eating disorders. Approximately ten 
per cent of those with eating disorders are male. 

"There's more attention starting to be paid 
towards young men," Vallianatos said. “There 
might not be that much out there in terms of 
publication, but awareness is a start." 


- 

CAMPUS DIGEST 

CAMPUS BUILDINGS EVACTUATED DUE TO 
BOMB SCARE 

Around 9:30 a.m. on August 26, College Plaza at 
772 street and 82 avenue was evacuated follow¬ 
ing a bomb threat. 

Edmonton Police arrived on the scene and 
dosed surrounding roads and businesses as the 
explosives unit investigated. 

After searching the building, nothing sus¬ 
picious was found and staff were eventually 
allowed to return to the building. 

STUDENT AWARDED FUNDING FOR FOOD 
PRESERVATIVE RESEARCH 

A graduate student in the University of Alberta's 
Department of Agricultural, Food & Nutritional 
Science has been awarded a $33,000 fellowship 
from the Canadian Wheat Board. 

Brenna Black, a graduate student, will use the 
fellowship to explore the antifungal properties of 
bacteria found in wheat and barley seed. 

The bacterial compounds harvested may also 
provide an alternative to irradiation and atmo¬ 
spheric packaging to extend the shed life of 
food. 

AGEISM DEVELOPS EARLY ON 

Researchers at the U of A have found evidence 
for ageism in children as young as two years old. 

Researchers Kwong See and Elena Nicoladis 
wdh the Department oi Psychology have shown 
that toddlers can. develop negative stereotypes 
about those older than they are and that the 
effects of such development could last into their 
own old age 

INFRASTRUCTURE FUNDING AWARDED 

A $22. 5 million fund has been awarded to the 
University of Alberta from the federal Knowledge 
Infrastructure Program. 

The program is designed to fund projects ready 
for construction to additionally stimulate the 
economy. 

A portion oi the infrastructure funding will be 
used to renovate the Chemical and Materials 
Engineering Building and construct resource 
facilities in the Health Resources Innovation 
Facility. 



Me Without 
Measures office 
located on third 
floor 




o> 

03 



82 (Whyte) Ave 




Wegalimo 


Laurie Blakeman 

MLA Edmonton-Centre 

Your Official Opposition Critic for Environment, Culture and Human Rights 
Helping students who live downtown 


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