Castlewood Promotes Increased Awareness of “OSFED” during National Eating Disorder Week

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Castlewood Treatment Centers are a nationally recognized resource for expertise in treating co-occuring eating disorders. As part of their recognition of National Eating Disorder Week, Castlewood is promoting awareness of all eating disorders and highlighting OSFED, the most common but least understood of disordered eating behaviors.

The fact is OSFED has a greater mortality rate than anorexia and bulimia combined. People and families struggling with OSFED aren’t getting the help they need, and many medical professionals aren’t recognizing the problem early enough.

As a central focus to the 2015 National Eating Disorder Week, Castlewood Treatment Centers are emphasizing education to the national public arena regarding types of eating disorders that are just as severe as anorexia and bulimia, but not as commonly discussed in the media. During this important week, February 23-March 1, Castlewood will host a series of events to help increase awareness in the public and professional communities. They will be partnering with The Alliance for Eating Disorder Awareness to highlight their #NoFilter Campaign, and they’ll be hosting a daily Facebook discussion and Q&A with therapists and fielding questions from the audience. In addition to awareness activities around OSFED, each of the three Castlewood Treatment Centers will have an important secondary focus on male eating disorders, how the media approaches eating disorders and the newly trending co-occurring disorders such as Diabulimia and Orthorexia.

OSFED, Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder, and formerly (EDNOS- Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified) is the most common eating disorder among these two populations:

  •     Those seeking treatment for an eating disorder in treatment centers
  •     Individuals with eating disorders in the community (diagnosed and undiagnosed)

Unlike anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder, OSFED lacks strict diagnostic criteria in the DSM-V, The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association. OSFED is more of a catch all for those sufferers whose symptoms fall outside the criteria for other eating disorders. This means that many insurance companies do not provide adequate coverage for this disorder and will therefore not always cover the full cost of treatment. Castlewood Treatment Centers provides scholarships and raises funds to help many of those requiring care for OSFED, but the need for treatment is in extreme contrast to the lack of affordable treatment currently available across the nation.

“Many people assume that because OSFED is a catch all diagnosis, then it must be a mild condition that doesn’t warrant concern,” explains Deana Wilson, Director of Intake at Castlewood Treatment Center. “But the fact is OSFED has a greater mortality rate than anorexia and bulimia combined. People and families struggling with OSFED aren’t getting the help they need, and many medical professionals aren’t recognizing the problem early enough. That’s why awareness is so critical, and why we are placing emphasis on OSFED awareness during National Eating Disorder Week this year.”

For many individuals suffering from an eating disorder, the symptoms may fall just outside of the criteria, or the sufferer demonstrates symptoms that can fall into more than one category. This automatically excludes them from a formal diagnosis of Anorexia, Bulimia or Binge Eating Disorder. For example, an individual may meet all criteria for Anorexia Nervosa purging type, but be above a “significantly low weight.” Those with OSFED fall outside the more formal identified eating disorders, but eating disorder professionals, and statistics, will attest to the severe nature of Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder.

Prior to the newest edition of the DSM-V, OSFED was classified as EDNOS and those with binge eating issues fell under EDNOS. Castlewood offered a specific binge eating disorder (BED) treatment program before it became a formal diagnosis, recognizing the specific constellation of detrimental symptoms affecting the lives of those with BED. The formal diagnosis has increased insurance coverage and allowed individuals access to successful professional treatment. Castlewood takes pride in providing a range of excellent treatment programs. In addition, they are committed to advocating for fair insurance accountability and governmental legislation so that every person and family that needs help for an eating disorder will be able to access a comprehensive menu of affordable resources. Partaking in National Eating Disorder Awareness Week helps them achieve this goal of raising national attention for serious issues that still need greater public attention and support.

About Castlewood Treatment Centers:
Castlewood Treatment Center helps people with eating disorders transform to healthier lives. Established in 2000 as the first residential treatment facility in Missouri, Castlewood’s licensed health care team is nationally recognized and has decades of combined experience in providing compassionate, professional and successful treatment for more than 1,000 men and women with eating disorders and related conditions. They offer individualized, supportive and comprehensive care in a home-like residential setting to help people towards recovery and a bright, healthy future. Castlewood facilities are located in St. Louis, Missouri; Monterey, California; and Birmingham, Alabama and are accredited by the The Joint Commission. St. Louis facilities are also accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. For more information, visit

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Deanna James
since: 11/2009
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