Eating Disorders and The Role of Family Support With Rebecca Manley
Play • 31 min

Did you know that children as young as four years old can start developing poor body image? Today on Beyond the Balance Sheet, Arden is speaking to Rebecca Manley about eating disorder awareness and prevention. Rebecca is the founder of MEDA (Multi-service Eating Disorders Association) and owner of Manley Coaching. Her passion is working with teens and families on issues related to body image and self-esteem. We are talking about how to teach body positivity to kids, what signs to look for in your child’s relationship with food, and the fine line between eating healthy and restrictive eating. This is a really important conversation you don’t want to miss out on! 




  • [01:16] What are signs of a negative body image developing and how can parents encourage body positivity
  • [09:05] Are eating disorders more prevalent in high achieving and affluent families
  • [13:05] The fine line between healthy behaviors and restrictive eating habits 
  • [18:08] How to intervene in situations when diet culture is praised within a family 
  • [24:00] How to navigate situations when parents aren’t on the same page about what their child needs
  • [28:25] What is the future of body image and self esteem issues in families 




  • Children as young as four and five are starting to develop a poor body image saying that they dislike parts of their bodies. And approximately 20% of college females will struggle with an eating disorder during college. We need greater awareness and prevention of eating disorders.
  • The Five A’s help parents teach children how to protect against the development of eating disorder: Kids need to be assertive and speak up for what they believe in; have awareness of societal pressures; have acceptance of their bodies; know the appropriate action to regulate emotions; have ample opportunities for activity and healthy movement.
  • Parents need to understand that high stress environments that emphasize achievement or a certain body image increase the risk for the development of an eating disorder. Parents need to be mindful of the messages they are sending to their children..




Rebecca Manley, is a trained coach and a member of the International Coach Federation as well as a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional and Certified in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) . Rebecca is best known for her work in eating disorder awareness and prevention. Rebecca has published her curriculum entitled, "Teaching Body Confidence" which has been featured on the televised news programs World News Tonight on ABC News, 48 Hours news on CBS as well as many other national and local stations. In addition to body image, Rebecca also specialize in treating anxiety related to school, sports, family and social relationships.


Rebecca Manley is also the founder of MEDA, Inc, also known as the Multi-service Eating Disorders Association. MEDA is a national organization dedicated to the prevention and treatment of eating disorders. MEDA serves as a resource to those struggling with eating disorders and their families. MEDA also serves as a support network for schools and universities as well as a training program for professionals offering a comprehensive internship program, supervision groups and a national conference held every spring. Now twenty-five years old, MEDA is internationally known for its unique treatment model as well as for its innovative educational programming.


Rebecca Manley Website


Rebecca Manley on LinkedIn

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