Talk to someone now. Call our National Helpline on 1800 33 4673. You can also chat online or email

Talk to someone now. Call our National Helpline on 1800 33 4673. You can also chat online or email

Butterfly: Let’s Talk podcast

Winner of the 2021 Mental Health Service Sound/Vision Journalism Award

People affected by eating disorders often feel isolated and alone, because the conditions are not something we hear about much. But more than one million Australians are affected by them right now. Butterfly is a voice for change—because everyone deserves care and support.

Our podcast connects you with experts, people with a lived experience and their families and carers. Whether you’re personally affected, you’re caring for a friend or family member, or want to find out more about body image issues and eating disorders, Butterfly: Let’s talk Podcast is a great place to start.

Read about our host Sam Ikin’s lived experience of an eating disorder

Read more about our Mental Health Service Award

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All episodes

Listen now Season 4, episode 12

Peer worker Reece on how your own experience can be the key to recovery for others

Listen to Reece Georgas' honest description of his own lived experience and how, as a trained peer worker, he uses learned skills alongside his mental health story to safely enable recovery for others.

Listen now Season 4, episode 11

Dr Carly Roukos on life at Wandi Nerida residential treatment centre

Wandi Nerida, based on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, provides a unique model of holistic, person-centred, inpatient care. Monash University just published a study that points to key benefits of the program, so we asked the centre's Clinical Lead to tell us how and why it all works.

Listen now Season 4, episode 10

In Depth: Butterfly’s Head of Research & Policy on the new Community Insights Report

If you’ve ever wondered what the public in Australia knows and thinks about eating disorders and body image issues, this episode will put all your questions to rest. We unpack the latest findings from Butterfly's 2024 Community Insights Report with Butterfly's Head of Knowledge, Research and Policy.

Listen now Season 4, episode 9

Ouch: The eye-popping costs of an eating disorder

We often talk about the psycho-emotional costs of eating disorders for those living with them; but up to this point, we haven’t learned much about the costs to society. Now we know more.

Listen now Season 4, episode 8

If you’ve experienced trauma – you could be at risk for an eating disorder

Not all people with eating disorders have experienced trauma, but there's a connection between a person's lived experience of trauma and their eating disorder. Clinicians can support their clients in addressing what they may have lived through, with positive outcomes for their lives and behaviours.

Listen now Season 4, episode 7

In Depth with Prof. Bryn Austin: Harvard’s secret weapon fighting the diet industry

Distinguished social behavioural scientist at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health, Professor Bryn Austin, talks about the the transformative potential of strategic initiatives around prevention, including what her laboratory did to protect young Americans from predatory diet-industry profiteering. 

Listen now Season 4, episode 6

Under-diagnosed and poorly treated: EDs in larger bodies

People of a higher-weight are at an increased risk of eating disorders. Yet they often experience weight stigma and poor care from health professionals. They're told to lose weight for all health concerns, without being screened for an eating disorder. Our new podcast unpacks this phenomenon.

Listen now Season 4, episode 5

ANZAED 23: Still more to learn from the latest in research

At the recent Australia and New Zealand Academy for Eating Disorders conference on the Gold Coast, we spoke to experts about new and groundbreaking insights into eating disorders. This episode is the second in a series of two.

Listen now Season 4, episode 4

In Depth with Lived Experience advocate Shannon Calvert

Shannon Calvert experienced a longstanding and severe eating disorder and through the ups and downs of her own journey, has since dedicated her life in recovery as a pioneering advocate for including the voice of lived experience in treatment design.

Listen now Season 4, episode 3

The latest in diagnosis and care from the annual ANZAED conference

We snuck into the annual Australia and New Zealand Academy for Eating Disorders (ANZAED) conference to illuminate the future of eating disorder diagnosis and care and asked some of our favourite speakers to summarise their research.

Listen now Season 4, episode 2

In Depth with former Helpline Manager Juliette Thomson on Person-Centred Recovery

An eating disorder is not just a set of behaviours or symptoms. It is a way of coping with difficult things. In this episode, psychologist and former Butterfly Helpline Manager, Juliette Thomson, explains why a person-centred and holistic approach is key to establishing long-term recovery.

Listen now Season 4, episode 1

What medications can help you recover from an eating disorder?

Medications prescribed to people experiencing eating disorders is nothing new. But do we know how they work and if they really help? Professor Richard Newton, Dr Claire Foldi and Dr Kristi Griffiths talk about both old and new pharmaceutical therapies and what new treatments could offer hope.

Listen now Season 3, episode 14

What 1600 young people told us about their body image

The results from the new Butterfly Body Kind Youth Survey are concerning - one in three kids are completely dissatisfied with the way that they look. In this episode Sam talks to mental health experts who work with young people, and two students who say adults and institutions need to do more to help.

Listen now Season 3, episode 13

Meet the three MPs committed to better care for eating disorders

Based on continuous calls for help from their constituents, three MPs are acting for change. Independent Zoe Daniel, Liberal Andrew Wallace, and Labor’s Susan Templeman are starting with a new Parliamentary Friends Group for Eating Disorder Awareness to highlight the critical need for more care.

Listen now Season 3, episode 12

It still hurts: Appearance-based teasing when you’re a kid

Many of us remember being teased about our appearance in primary school because it happens - a lot. In this episode we talk to a researcher, a parent, a teacher, and a woman who lived through it to explore the high costs of appearance-based teasing and how schools can change things for kids.

Listen now Season 3, episode 11

In Depth with National Eating Disorders Collaboration director Beth Shelton

As a highly respected professional in the field, we asked Beth Shelton, long-time director of the National Eating Disorder Collaboration (NEDC), to explain the different diagnoses for eating disorders, the possible causes, and what she believes constitutes “normal” eating.

Listen now Season 3, episode 10

All about #BodyPride as an LGBTQIA+ human

In this episode of Let’s Talk, we chat to five wildly popular LGBTQIA+ content creators about the complicated community pressures around body and beauty ideals during Mardi Gras and #WorldPride, and how we can address them during these big events and beyond.

Listen now Season 3, episode 9

In Depth with early childhood body image expert Dr. Steph Damiano

We know that negative body image can impact almost all a person's life outcomes – from their future relationships to their careers. We may be less aware how early body image develops. So how do we protect our young children from developing a negative body image? And when should we start?

Listen now Season 3, episode 8

How can we be kind to our bodies this summer?

The summer holidays arrive with food-laden parties and extra attention to the way that we look. This time of year can be especially difficult for people experiencing body image or eating concerns. How can we navigate all the seasonal pressures and provide care and compassion to the people we love?

Listen now Season 3, episode 7

In Depth on Perfectionism with Prof. Tracey Wade

The drive for perfectionism is unusually common in people experiencing body image issues and eating disorders. The trait is quite different from the drive to improve, which is a normally healthy desire. Perfectionistic people, however, believe that perfect is possible—and the problem is that it's not.

Listen now Season 3, episode 6

In Depth with Occupational Therapist Dr. Elysa Roberts

In this episode, we sit down with Dr Elysa Roberts to discover why occupational therapy (OT), generally defined as “any activity in which one engages”, can be so effective in treating body image issues and eating disorders.

Listen now Season 3, episode 5

Young people & body image – all we don’t know

According to yearly surveys by Mission Australia, body image is consistently a top concern for young people. The problem is we don't really know why. What do we still need hear from young people to prevent poor body image issues from becoming entrenched?

Listen now Season 3, episode 4

In Depth with Worimi Woman Dr. Liz Dale

Dr. Liz Dale is a Worimi Woman whose work and research involves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' lived experience of eating disorders and body image concerns. She shares how Aboriginal ways of knowing, being and doing can deeply enhance mainstream treatment approaches.

Listen now Season 3, episode 3

Where’s the limit to enhancing your looks?

Most species are interested in how they look; it's not a drive we can expect to eliminate. But parts of society take advantage of our natural desire to look better. So how do we find the line between putting our best foot forward and going too far?

Listen now Season 3, episode 2

In Depth with body acceptance advocate Bella Davis

Bella Davis was sick of being told she needed to go on a diet and working so hard to achieve an "ideal" body shape and size. So, one day, she posted a photo of her body on Instagram, “just being a body, just sitting down”. That’s when things began to get interesting.

Listen now Season 3, episode 1

How do you know it’s an eating disorder?

It’s the most basic of questions and the one most often asked on the Butterfly Helpline: How do you know it’s an eating disorder? If you're thinking there may be a problem, it's probably worth checking out. In the meantime, this podcast offers clues to what is - and what isn't - an eating disorder.

Listen now Season 2, episode 23

How’s life when your sibling has an eating disorder?

In this podcast we look at the impact of eating disorders on siblings – how they feel about their brother or sister’s eating disorder, how they feel about their sibling’s experience, what support they feel able to offer, and what support they may actually need for themselves.

Listen now Season 2, episode 22

In Depth with CEO, Mental Health Commission, Christine Morgan

Before Christine Morgan became CEO of Australia’s Mental Health Commission, she served for 10 years as CEO of Butterfly. She sat down with Sam Ikin for an in-depth review of eating disorders in Australia from when Butterfly started in 2002 and into the future.

Listen now Season 2, episode 21

Eating Disorders: Past, present and future care

To mark 20 years of serving people affected by body image issues and eating disorders, we're reviewing the past and present of care in Australia, and looking forward to the future for improved outcomes for those at risk.

Listen now Season 2, episode 20

In Depth with parenting expert Justin Coulson

Dr Justin Coulson is one of Australia's most trusted parenting experts who says developing body acceptance is protective for long terms mental and physical health. He shares how parents and carers can support young people's growth in this area.

Listen now Season 2, episode 19

Eating disorders and autism: More common than you think

The relationship between autism and eating disorders is not well known but the two quite often go hand in hand. In fact, the connection is so common that many clinicians recommend that people diagnosed with an eating disorder should probably be screened for autism too.

Listen now Season 2, episode 18

In Depth with LGBTIQA+ specialist Kai Schweizer

Kai Schweizer a respected specialist in LGBTIQA+ issues, including the community’s experience of eating disorders. He spoke to Sam about his lived experience of an eating disorder, how it originated in his gender dysphoria, and what provided the key to recovery.

Listen now Season 2, episode 17

Addressing risks of narrow body & beauty ideals in the media

We’ve been fed overly narrow beauty and body standards through the media for as long as it's been around. What’s less talked about are the consequences: body dissatisfaction and eating disorders. What can we do to create a safer environment for both consumers and media workers?

Listen now Season 2, episode 16

In Depth with eSafety Educator Cara Webber

As the Senior Education Officer at the eSafety Commissioner, Cara Webber teaches young people, their parents, and teachers how to keep safe on the Internet. She talks to Sam about how the Commissioner can support and advocate for young people at risk.

Listen now Season 2, episode 15

Sex, intimacy and body image

While a fulfilling sex life is a key component of general wellbeing, if you aren't comfortable in your skin, you're not going to be in the moment enough to fully experience pleasure. Sam spoke to sex and relationship experts and others about what they know can really help.

Listen now Season 2, episode 14

What is fat phobia (and why should you care)?

Fat phobia is based on the invalid premise that people of higher weight are inferior. While obviously untrue, weight stigma is associated with several negative outcomes for those in larger bodies. In this episode we find out how people are pushing back.

Listen now Season 2, episode 13

In Depth with fat positive influencer Katie Parrott

Social media influencer Katie Parrott uses her online presence to normalise larger bodies and to talk about fat phobia, mental health, public health, food, fashion, and anything else that comes to mind. Listen to Sam talk to Katie about her lived experience and what it is that she wants.

Listen now Season 2, episode 12

In Depth with exceptional sibling Jack Symonds

Jack Symonds' sister has lived experience of an eating disorder. This September, he successfully swam the English Channel in an incredible fundraising effort for Butterfly and Black Dog Institute. He spoke to Sam about his motivations and what the experience was really like.

Listen now Season 2, episode 11

What does an eating disorder look like to you?

About a million people in Australia will be burdened with an eating disorder this holiday season but for multitudes the people around them won’t know; they’ll be hiding in plain sight. Why? They don't look the way people with eating disorders are supposed to look.

Listen now Season 2, episode 10

In Depth with men’s body image expert Scott Griffiths

In this In Depth episode, Sam Ikin chats to Dr Scott Griffiths, who is challenging the myth that only young, privileged, white women experience eating disorders. The truth is that 30% identify as male - and this percentage is likely to be higher because many men are reluctant to speak up or seek help.

Listen now Season 2, episode 9

Eating disorders & other health conditions

We know that treating an eating disorder can be complicated. But when you’re managing an eating disorder along with a co-occurring medical condition, that can add extra complexity. In this episode, we talk to guests living with coexisting conditions as well as experts helping their clients to manage both.

Listen now Season 2, episode 8

In Depth with Professor Richard Newton

One of the challenges of treating someone with an eating disorder is actually identifying the co-occuring mental health issues that we need to treat too. Professor Richard Newton talks with Sam Ikin about how new understanding of mental health conditions in relation to eating disorders is helping to improve diagnosis and care.

Listen now Season 2, episode 7

What is healthy eating?

In response to food corporations' relentless marketing of addictive junk foods, along with their highly publicised public health impacts, there's increased fear around food and growing interest in healthy eating. This all represents risk for eating disorders.

Listen now Season 2, episode 6

In Depth with social media investigator Dr. Suku Sukunesan

We are all becoming aware that social platforms can drive mental illness, including eating disorders. But according to Applied Social Technology Researcher, Dr Suku Sukunesan, there are more risks than we think.

Listen now Season 2, episode 5

Teens and body image: Starting at home

Adolescence comes with unique developmental needs, a changing body, and heightened awareness of diet industry marketing. Experts break down the influences on teens’ body image, and families share learnings from their experience.

Listen now Season 2, episode 4

In Depth with Paralympian Jessica Smith

In the wake of new focus on mental health in elite athletes, in this episode of In Depth, Olympian Jessica Smith talks candidly about her body image issues and eating disorder, including the story of her recovery.

Listen now Season 2, episode 3

Dealing with difficulties accessing care

It can be hard to access treatment for eating disorders - Barriers include a complex health system, a shortage of trained clinicians, GPs who don’t pick up on the warning signs, and the high cost of treatment. So what do we do?

Listen now Season 2, episode 2

In Depth with treatment pioneer Carolyn Costin

Nobody has had a more profound impact on the treatment of eating disorders than Carolyn Costin. She’s the first guest on our new Let’s Talk In Depth series, which will air every month.

Listen now Season 2, episode 1

Eating disorders and other mental health issues

Eating disorders almost always occur with other mental health issues. In fact, research tells us that 97 percent of the time there are co-occurring conditions. It’s usually a complex situation with different experiences for different people.

Listen now Season 1, episode 13

Ask me anything about eating disorders

In this episode, we’re throwing the podcast open to you. Every month audience members ask us to answer questions about body image and eating disorders. Many of the questions are too important not to answer.

Listen now Season 1, episode 12

Body dissatisfaction starts young: How can we change the picture?

Studies tell us that if you struggle with body image as a young person, you're more likely to feel that way as an adult. You also have increased risk of developing an eating disorder. The troubling news is that more and more young kids are telling us they’re unhappy with their bodies and how they look.

Listen now Season 1, episode 11

Let’s Yarn: Eating and body issues amongst mob

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experience body dissatisfaction and eating disorders as much as everyone else. But there are risk factors that are unique to this community, along with unique pathways to recovery.

Listen now Season 1, episode 10

Sports and eating disorders – what’s the connection?

High-performance athletes are Australia's version of royalty. They do superhuman things and adoring fans hail them as heroes, but off the field, they’re human beings. And like all human beings, they are susceptible to body image issues and eating disorders.

Listen now Season 1, episode 9

The tough truth about diets

Every January millions of us start a new diet or health program, and then abandon our new year’s resolutions by February. It can leave those of us who have dropped whatever regime we’ve chosen this year with feelings of failure - and possibly worse about ourselves than before.

Listen now Season 1, episode 8

A game-changing approach to care

Carolyn Costin swears full and complete recovery from an eating disorder is possible. For more than 40 years, she’s been changing lives through her revolutionary model of care. It was the basis for the Monte Nido residential treatment centres in the US, which have helped thousands to fully recover.

Listen now Season 1, episode 7

Navigating the festive season

It’s that time of the year again. Meeting family and old friends to celebrate over food and drink. But for many living with eating disorders, the festive season can be a minefield that sparks anxiety whenever we think about it.

Listen now Season 1, episode 6

Life in recovery

We may not yet fully understand all the causes of eating disorders, but we do know that recovery is always possible. In this episode, Sam Ikin talks to people who have recovered from their eating disorders in order to find out what worked for them. Spoiler alert: It’s usually a bit of a multi-pronged approach.

Listen now Season 1, episode 5

Eating disorders – not what you think

What do you think of when you hear the words “eating disorder''? Chances are, they’re not what you think. This episode is being released for Mental Health Month 2020. With the diverse ways in which eating disorders can occur—along with the many unhelpful myths about them—we’ve gone back to basics.

Listen now Season 1, episode 4

Young people, body image and #socialmedia

Social media is a huge driver of body image issues and young people are particularly at risk. Packed with unrealistic images and ideals, social platforms can be an incubator for mental illness - including eating disorders.

Listen now Season 1, episode 3

Gender, sexuality & eating disorders

One million people in Australia will struggle with an eating disorder during their lifetime, and a significant number belong to the LGBTIQA+ community. Yet only 25% of those living with an eating disorder will ever seek help because they don’t fit the stereotype.

Listen now Season 1, episode 2

Men, we need to talk

Men, we need to talk. The stereotypical eating disorder sufferer is a young, wealthy, white woman, but there’s a lot of evidence telling us that the stereotype is inaccurate. Based on current numbers, one in three people living with an eating disorder is male, and there are a lot of men suffering in silence.

Listen now Season 1, episode 1

Let’s Talk: the tyranny of distance

There is a critical shortage of adequate support for people affected by eating disorders who live in regional and remote areas. We can all relate to feelings of frustration and distress after months of living in isolation during the COVID-19 event. But for people who live in remote and regional areas, the experience of isolation from desperately needed services and treatment will continue long after the pandemic has passed.

Listen now Season 1, episode 0

Coming soon – The Butterfly podcast

Introducing the Butterfly podcast: Let's Talk - a place to connect you with people with a lived experience of body image issues and eating disorders, their carers and expert professionals who support their recovery.