National Eating Disorders Association’s (NEDA) 11th annual national conference will be held in the District on Oct. 10-12, at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill. The keynote speaker was Dr. Thomas Insel, director of the National Institute of Mental Health.

NEDA’s Federal Eating Disorders Lobby Day kicked off the conference. The segment was designed to educate legislators on the importance of funding for treatment and research for eating disorders.

The Feeding Hope Fund, launched in February 2013 to raise restricted funds for making grants to qualified clinical researchers and experts, will be awarding its first grants totaling $400,000. Projects funded will either develop and test new treatments or provide training on established evidence-based treatments to fellow clinicians. This project is in direct response to seriously underfunded clinical research and training in the field of eating disorders.

Additionally, the 2013 conference featured programs designed for individuals and families affected by eating disorders as well as professionals in the field.

This year, the conference also featured sessions including, “Be a Man,” which was dedicated to examining the special challenges confronting men with eating disorders and the professionals treating them. In the U.S. 10 million men and 20 million women suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder at some time in their life, including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, or an eating disorder not otherwise specified.