Signs of Eating Disorder

Signs of Eating Disorder

An eating disorder is a serious mental and physical condition associated with extreme changes to a person’s eating behavior. Teenagers and young adults tend to develop eating disorders, and women and girls are more likely to suffer from them. The exact cause of eating disorders is unclear, but they seem to coexist with psychological and medical issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, difficulty coping with emotions, and substance abuse.

Some people use food as a way of gaining control over one aspect of their lives. The behavior may begin as eating more or less than usual, but it can spiral out of control and take over a person’s life. If left untreated, eating disorders can lead to serious health consequences.

It’s common for people with eating disorders to hide their unhealthy behaviors, so it can be difficult to recognize the signs of an eating disorder, especially early on.

Eating Disorder Warning Signs 

While eating disorder behaviors can vary from person to person, here are some of the common warning signs to watch out for:

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1. Changes in Weight

If an individual weighs less than 85%of their ideal body weight and exhibits other characteristic signs of an eating disorder, they can be diagnosed with anorexia nervosa. 

2. Preoccupation with Body Image

If someone becomes preoccupied with certain celebrities or models and compares themselves unfavorably to them then wearing baggy clothes to hide their body shape, these actions can be cause for concern. 

3. Disruptions in Eating Patterns

You may notice that someone stops eating with the family and is preoccupied with counting calories, drinks lots of water and caffeine to suppress the appetite, eats noticeably smaller portions, and refuses to eat at all. Maybe they can start bingeing on certain foods and going to the bathroom right away to vomit what they just ate. Also, individuals with an eating disorder may lookout for newly developed eating rituals such as chewing for long periods before swallowing or cutting the food into smaller portions. 

4. Preoccupation with Nutritional Content

If someone you know starts to classify foods as good or bad, safe or unsafe, healthy or unhealthy, constantly searching for organic and low-fat diet foods, these things could be a sign that they need help. 

5. Changes in Exercise Patterns

When someone becomes preoccupied with physical fitness, spends hours exercising, talks too much about the total calories they’ve burned, or get upset if their exercise routine is disrupted, these could also be a warning sign. 

6. Mood Fluctuations

As an eating disorder gains momentum, it may lead to signs of depression, irritability, and anxiety which causes the individual to stop socializing and lose interest in previously enjoyed activities.

7. Use of Diuretics, Laxatives, or Diet Pills

There is terrific pressure on young girls and women today to look a certain way, but when they are willing to risk their health to achieve an unhealthy standard and resort to diuretics, laxatives, or diet pills, these can be a sign they need help. 

If someone you care about exhibits one or more of the warning signs listed, you need to act. An eating disorder can quickly take off a life of its own. 

About Edward Mallorca

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Signs of Eating Disorder