Eating disorder is a serious illness related to abnormal eating habits such as eating small amounts of food during every meal or overeating. It affects an individual`s physical and mental health as ones get addicted to a particular diet portion and it`s hard to treat. Many of you feel very hungry at times while sometime you may not like to have your meal and this is quite normal, but if you are getting addicted to a particular diet size, it could be a sign of an eating disorder. Some common eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder.
Eating disorders may occur during teenage or early adulthood. However, it may affect children and elderly people as well. The illness usually appears as an associated condition with other diseases such as depression, anxiety disorders, or other such conditions and it can be treated with proper medication.
Types of Eating Disorders:
The different types of eating disorders known are:
This disorder is characterized by extreme thickness and fear of gaining weight instead of clearly underweight conditions. The person is obsessed with extremely restricted eating and s/he has an unwillingness to maintain a normal or healthy weight.
People with anorexia nervosa develop obsessions for food, eating, and weight control. The patients generally eat only specific food and that too in very small quantities. The patient may also show signs of compensatory behaviors such as extreme dieting, excessive exercising, misuse of laxatives, etc. Anorexia may lead to abnormal or reduced menses among girls or women and bone loss. The patient may develop risk of heart diseases and other critical conditions.
The disorder is characterized by recurrent episodes or unusual overeating and inability to control themselves followed by compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting, excessive exercising , misuse of laxatives, etc. The patients of bulimia nervosa may also fast for certain time.
The patients of bulimia unlike anorexia patients have a healthy or slight increased weight, but they also have an intense fear of weight gain and usually unhappy with their body shape or size.
Patients with binge-eating disorder usually overeat and they find it difficult to control the addiction towards food. Unlike bulimia, there are no episodes of compensatory behaviors such as forced vomiting that makes them overweight or obese. Binge-eating disorder lead to weight issues.
The patients are more likely to develop cardiovascular diseases and hypertension.
Compulsive overeating is characterized by an addiction towards food and to hide emotions through eating and food, to cope with stress, etc. In short patients with compulsive disorder relate everything in their life with food and eating.
Some signs that can warn you against the unhealthy eating habits are:
- A drastic change in eating habits
- Noticeable change in appetite
- Intense fear of weight gain and extreme thinness
- Obsession of food and eating
- Avoiding food or meals often
- Obsession to use clothes to hide weight loss
- Self-induced vomiting, misuse of laxatives, fasting, diuretics, enemas, etc
- Social withdrawal and secret eating