Eating Disorder Treatment in Colorado

Many different therapy types are available throughout your state, ranging from private inpatient to great CO outpatient programs.

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Eating disorders like binge eating disorder (BED), bulimia nervosa (BN), and anorexia nervosa (AN) are serious conditions that can impact physical, mental, and emotional health, and unfortunately, in the wake of the pandemic, these illnesses have been on the rise. [1]

But in Colorado, eating disorder treatment is available across a spectrum of care. If you or a loved one are struggling with an eating disorder, it’s crucial to seek out help from one of these facilities or another qualified program.

Types of Bulimia Treatment in Colorado

All eating disorders are dangerous conditions and can be deadly if left untreated. However, some people struggle with eating disorder symptoms that are more severe than others.

To help ensure patients receive the appropriate type of treatment for their specific case and condition, eating disorder treatment is offered at several levels of care. In Colorado, all levels of care are available for those needing help.

Virtual Treatment

Virtual care involves treatment sessions offered online, through websites, apps, or over the phone. It’s a relatively new type of treatment, but studies have already shown that online treatment for eating disorders can be just as effective as in-person care in many cases. [3]

This kind of care is an excellent option for those who live far from an in-person eating disorder treatment center, people who have challenges around mobility or transportation, those with co-occurring social anxiety, or simply those who would prefer to receive treatment at home.

Still, online care may not be appropriate for people with severe eating disorders. Intake forms filled out at the start of a program should help determine if online care is right for you or your loved one.

Who Offers Virtual Eating Disorder Treatment in Colorado?

Though online care for eating disorders is still relatively new, Within Health has already created one of the most comprehensive and helpful programs on offer. The program works with experts across several fields that are crucial for full eating disorder recovery to develop individual treatment plans for each patient. Additional options include having meals or medical equipment sent through the mail to ensure you have everything you need to succeed.

Inpatient/Residential Treatment

Inpatient treatment is the most intensive form of eating disorder treatment, requiring patients to stay full-time at a facility to receive around-the-clock medical monitoring and care. There are several types of inpatient programs available for patients in Colorado.

Inpatient hospitalization is the most intensive. It’s generally reserved for patients who are experiencing a physical or mental health crisis or whose lives are otherwise in immediate danger. [2] The goal of these programs is medical stabilization, and patients usually stay for up to a few weeks until they’re considered well enough to leave.

At a residential inpatient facility, patients receive care targeted toward more long-term goals. Treatments include individual and group therapy sessions, nutrition therapy sessions, medical monitoring, and meal support, though some programs also offer specialized treatments.

Residential treatment facilities are much more home-like than clinical, designed to keep patients happy and comfortable during their extended stay, with most programs lasting at least 30 days, though usually longer. [2]

Who Offers Inpatient Treatment in Colorado?

Luckily, there are a couple of Colorado eating disorder treatment centers that offer inpatient treatment. Eating Recovery Center in Denver treats children, adolescents, and adults in their 62,000-square-foot, 72-bed facility. They provide nutrition services, dining prepared in a state-of-the-art kitchen, and a travel concierge for those traveling in from outside the city.

EDCare is another option with different locations in Colorado. They specialize in providing patients with a strong, supportive team. They treat adolescents between 13 and 17 and adults over 18. They offer a partial hospitalization program with housing options in Denver, CO. They also provide outpatient and aftercare services.

Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHPs)

Partial hospitalization programs (PHPs) are another type of intensive eating disorder treatment program. Sometimes also called a day program, this level of care allows a patient to live and sleep at home while attending treatment sessions during the day.

Still, programs are usually rather in-depth, with sessions lasting as long as 10 hours per day, up to 6 days per week, or sometimes more. [2] Many treatments available in residential care are also offered to patients in a PHP, and some patients who could technically qualify for a residential program are recommended to PHPs instead. [2]

These programs are generally more flexible than residential treatment, however, with schedules adjusted as a patient continues in their progress toward eating disorder recovery.

Who Offers PHPs in Colorado?

La Luna Center offers many types of treatment for eating disorder recovery, including partial hospitalization programs. The facility has locations in Boulder and Fort Collins, where it offers in-person therapy sessions and meal support as part of its program.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient care is the least intensive form of eating disorder treatment, so patients at this stage must have a good amount of control over their symptoms. An outpatient schedule can vary, but it generally involves a weekly or regular session with a therapist or doctor to help patients stay accountable and aware of potential triggers while they continue their recovery journey.

Those who need more support can participate in an intensive outpatient program (IOP). This level of care represents a middle point between day and outpatient programs, with patients attending a few treatment sessions per week for a few hours at a time.

The looser schedule of an IOP makes the level of care an excellent option for those ready to start balancing their ongoing recovery with more social responsibilities, like a return to work or school.

Who Offers Outpatient Treatment in Colorado?

Children’s Hospital Colorado offers a day treatment program for individuals who need extra support and structure but do not require overnight care or 24-hour supervision. This program incorporates therapeutic activities, medical check-ups, and nutrition therapy. They also have an outpatient clinic that includes a medical assessment, assessment of the patient and family, and treatment recommendations. It’s suitable for children from birth to 18 years of age.

EDCare offers intensive outpatient, evening intensive outpatient, and outpatient and aftercare services. With the intensive outpatient program, patients remain focused on their individualized care plan and receive support as they practice recovery skills outside the program. Evening intensive outpatient services allow for those with daytime responsibilities to continue with their recovery program in the evening hours. Outpatient and aftercare services support long-term recovery via in-house and outside providers.

Additional Eating Disorder Resources in Colorado

Aside from programs designed specifically for eating disorder recovery, some Colorado programs offer other types of care, information, and resources.

The Eating Disorder Foundation is located in Denver, CO. This resource offers various services to individuals with eating disorders, including phone support, mentorship, coffee and conversation workshops, educational presentations, and even a therapeutic garden to visit.

Every month, the Aurora Public Library focuses on different mental health topics for teens. They direct patients to novels, nonfiction, information, and resources for anyone interested in learning more.

Eating Disorder Support Groups in Colorado

Support groups are another helpful step for many people on the recovery journey, allowing patients to build a support group and benefit from a sense of community.

The Eating Disorder Foundation in Colorado offers in-person support groups for individuals 18 or older. There are some virtual options as well, both for individuals and families.

There are support groups hosted by EDCare, some specifically for binge eating and others with a broader eating disorder topic.

Patients may also explore virtual support groups hosted by ANAD. These are weekly meetings on Zoom that last for 75 minutes. These are based on a first-come, first-served basis and are capped at 20 meeting attendees. Trained volunteers lead these support groups. Patients can find the schedule on their website.

What to Look for in a Bulimia Treatment Center/Program in Colorado

Finding the best eating recovery center for you or your loved one can feel scary or overwhelming. Considering these considerations helps you understand the differences between programs and better understand your priorities and expectations around treatment.

While it’s not required for a treatment facility to be accredited, this certification can make a big difference. Some insurance companies will only work with accredited institutions, and the measure can also assure that a program is up to or above industry standards.

Accreditations are most commonly provided by The Joint Commission and CARF International.

The price of a program is usually one of the biggest concerns of people looking for treatment options, with most patients needing health insurance to cover at least a portion of the cost.

Starting the search by contacting your insurance company can help streamline the process. Representatives should be able to point you toward centers, programs, doctors in their network, or treatments they’re more likely to cover.

If you’ve already found a center you’re interested in, check whether they’ll accept your insurance before enrolling. You can call the center to speak with an employee trained in the subject. To avoid any surprise bills down the line, make sure to ask not only about how much of the cost will be covered but also how long your insurance benefits will last.

Additional Questions

If you’re still having trouble picking the best treatment center, you can ask yourself or your would-be provider the following questions to help solidify your thoughts: [4]

  • How long has the center been in business?
  • Does the center provide multidisciplinary care?
  • Is there a treatment philosophy? If so, what is it?
  • Does the center offer financial assistance?
  • Does the center have any religious affiliations, and what role does it play in treatment philosophy?
  • Does the center offer help in obtaining reimbursement from the insurer?
  • What is security like at the center?

Finding Eating Disorder Help in Colorado

There are a few ways to begin looking into eating disorder treatment.

Speaking with your primary care physician, therapist, or psychiatrist is a good start. These professionals can help you obtain an official diagnosis, which is usually required for enrolling in a treatment program, or help you determine your next best steps.

Your insurance company may be another good place to start. Representatives from the company should be able to tell you more about what you’ll need to find and enroll in an appropriate treatment program.

But regardless of where you start, the decision to move forward is one of the most important ones you can make. It can go a long way toward getting you on the road to a healthier and happier future.


  1. Katella K. (2021, June 15). Eating Disorders on the Rise After Our Pandemic Year. Yale Medicine. Accessed October 2023.
  2. Levels of Care. (n.d.). University of California San Diego. Accessed October 2023.
  3. Steiger H, Booij L, Crescenzi O, Oliverio S, Singer I, Thaler L, St-Hilaire A, & Israel M. (2022). In-person versus virtual therapy in outpatient eating-disorder treatment: A COVID-19 inspired study. The International Journal of Eating Disorders; 55(1):145–150.
  4. Selecting a Treatment Center for Your Loved One. (n.d.). National Eating Disorders Association. Accessed October 2023. 

Last Update | 12 - 28 - 2023

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