Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia and binge eating are serious mental illnesses, they are not a lifestyle choice or a diet gone “too far”. They are associated with significant physical complications & increased mortality. Eating disorder not only involves mental illnesses but also wide ranging & serious complications which affect every major organ in the body. Many people with Eating disorder also present with depression, anxiety disorder, personality disorder or substance abuse problems. A person with Eating disorder may go to great lengths to hide, disguise or deny behaviour or not recognise there is anything wrong. Evidence shows the sooner you start treatment for eating, the shorter the recovery process. Eating disorder such as anorexia, bulimia and binge eating behaviour include extreme emotion, attitudes and behaviours surrounding weight& food issues such as:
- Anorexia Nervosa: Inadequate food intake leading to a weight thatis clearly too low; Intense fear of weight gain, obsession with weight & persistent behaviour. Self esteem overly related to body.
- Binge Eating: Frequent episodes of consuming very large amount of food and to prevent weight gain, self induced vomiting. A feeling of being out of control during Binge eating episodes. Feeling strong shame or guilt regarding eating.
- Bulimia: It is characterized by binge eating large quantities of food followed by self induced purging, vomiting, severe excercise, use of diuretics and enemas etc to try and compensate for the excessive intake.