Iowa State events planned to shed light on body image issues, eating disorders

AMES, Iowa — Body Image and Eating Disorder Awareness Week at Iowa State University begins Monday, Feb. 25.

BIEDA Week is part of a national effort to encourage a positive, sustainable lifestyle through awareness of body image issues and eating disorders and to identify resources on campus and locally. 

Sarah Thompson

Sarah Thompson. Photo provided by
Vivienne McMaster

Sarah Thompson, a writer, eating disorder recovery coach and consultant, will deliver the keynote lecture, “But You Don’t Look Like You Have an Eating Disorder…,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, in the Memorial Union Sun Room. This lecture is free and open to the public.

Thompson will share personal recovery stories after having an eating disorder for 18 years. The presentation will focus on barriers and access to eating disorder treatment, including fatphobia, homophobia and transphobia. Thompson, who identifies as larger-bodied and queer, is a thought leader in the Health at Every Size®, Body Trust® and LGBTQIA+ communities. Thompson is author of the blog Resilient Fat Goddex and has been featured on podcasts, including “Food Psych,” “Do No Harm” and “Fearless Rebelle Radio.”

Thompson’s work seeks to understand the connection between trauma, identity and systemic oppression.

This lecture is co-sponsored by the Division of Student Affairs and the Committee on Lectures, which is funded by Student Government.

Find more information about ISU lectures online or by calling 515-294-9934.

BIEDA Week schedule of events

“Honor Your Hunger”

Monday, Feb. 25, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
LeBaron Hall lobby

Free food stand encouraging individuals to “honor their hunger.”

Film screening of “Fattitude”

Tuesday, Feb. 26, 7 p.m.
101 Carver Hall

“Fattitude” examines how popular culture perpetuates fat hatred and fat-shaming that results in biases and civil rights issues. The documentary was created by filmmakers Lindsey Averill and Viridiana Lieberman. It features diverse voices, including academic scholars, activists, directors, writers, actors and psychologists.

“Rock Your Body”

Thursday, Feb. 28, 4-5:30 p.m.
3430 Beyer Hall

Experience “joyful movement,” a wellness resource fair, music, prizes, free food and vendors to promote self-health.

“Love Your Selfie”

Friday, March 1, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
LeBaron Hall lobby

This event is a collaboration with the ISU Fashion Show. Polaroid pictures will be taken, individuals will write on the picture something they love about themselves and the pictures will be hung around inspiring others to love themselves, too. The display will be used in the fashion show April 13.

Campus events are co-sponsored by the Body Image and Eating Disorder Awareness student organization, Division of Diversity and Inclusion, Division of Student Affairs, Eating Disorder Coalition of Iowa, agronomy department, food science and human nutrition department, kinesiology department, Ivy College of Business, College of Human Sciences, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Program for Women in Science and Engineering, and Student Athletic Affairs.