By: Irvina Kanarek
The Body Image Survival Guide for Parents by Marci Warhaft-Nadler is a must read for every parent raising a child in the 21st century. A negative body image is a contributing factor for developing an eating disorder. Eating disorders are on the rise in children. There was a 119% increase of eating disorder related hospitalizations among children under 12 years old between the years 1999 and 2006.
Watching a family drop off their daughter at the Victorian – Eating Disorder Treatment is heart breaking. Emotions are high; crying, screaming and bargaining are all quite familiar. Our staff calms the parents and client reminding them that they are making a wise decision to seek help for this deadly mental illness. It is a scenario every parent dreads – acknowledging their child is sick and in need of professional help. Many question if anything could have been done to prevent the eating disorder? A genetic and social disease, preventing eating disorders is hard to quantify. However, a new book titled, The Body Image Survival Guide for Parents by Marci Warharft-Nadler, eating disorder survivor and Certified Personal Trainer provides several preventative tools to navigate a child towards a healthy body image.
The Body Image Survival Guide is broken down into chapters addressing issues for every age group:
- Ages 0-3
- Ages 4-8
- Ages 9-12
- Age 13 and up
As well as how to address body image in a variety of scenarios:
- Body image issues with boys
- Building self-esteem
- How to help an overweight child
- When parents need to lose weight
- Post-pregnancy dieting
- Role modeling positive body image
- The dangers of negative body image
- Media literacy
My favorite thing about the book is the way Nadler breaks up the chapters with real questions from parents. The “Dear Abby” format of the book quickly makes it seem as if Nadler is simply one parent talking to another. I highly recommend The Body Image Survival Guide for Parents to parents, teachers and school counselors.
About the Author- Irvina Kanarek is the executive director and founder of Rewrite Beautiful, a nonprofit organization in Costa Mesa, CA that creatively changes how girls see beauty in themselves, for eating disorder prevention. Previously Irvina worked at The Victorian as a support staff counselor.