Eating Disorders

Eating Disorders

Eating Disorders are simply an unhealthy relationship with food that becomes extreme and impairs physically, mentally, and emotionally. Most eating disorders involve an unhealthy focus on weight, body image, and food. Eating disorders are one of the most dangerous group of mental health disorders because it can cause serious health issues or death. According to The Center for Discovery, “without treatment, up to 20 percent of all eating disorder cases result in death.”

Different Symptoms of an Eating Disorders

  • Preoccupation with weight, food, and dieting
  • Refusal or restriction of eating certain foods
  • Seems uncomfortable eating in front of people
  • Skipping meals or taking smaller portions
  • Any new diet which could include cutting out an entire food group
  • Withdrawal from friends and activities
  • Frequent dieting
  • Extreme concern with body weight or shape
  • Frequently checking in the mirror to point out flaws in appearance
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Fluctuations in weight
  • Gastrointestinal complaints
  • Menstrual irregularities
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Abnormal lab results after a blood test
  • Dizziness, especially when standing up too fast
  • Fainting
  • Feeling cold all the time
  • Sleep trouble
  • Cuts or callouses on fingers and joints due to induced vomiting
  • Dental problems
  • Dry skin, hair, and brittle nails
  • Weakness
  • Yellow skin
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Impaired immune system

Reference: National Eating Disorders Association

Different Eating Disorders Treated

Anorexia Nervosa 

Restriction of food intake, intense fear of gaining weight, and a distorted view of an individual’s body weight or shape.

Bulimia Nervosa 

Recurrent binge eating, recurrent elimination behaviors to prevent weight gain such as vomiting, laxatives, diuretics, other medications, fasting or excessive exercise. There is also a distorted view of an individual’s body weight or shape.

Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) 

Lack of interest in eating or food, avoidance of certain foods based on sensory issues, and anxiety about adverse reactions to food like vomiting after eating.

Binge Eating Disorder

Eating in a discrete period of time, in larger quantities than the average person would eat in a short period of time.

Reference: Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fifth Edition 

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