Eating disorders may come in different forms, and will have a different set of behaviours associated with each different one. However they all have the same root cause: the desire to exhibit an element of control over the person’s life via the use of food.
The three main types of this destructive disorder are: Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa and binge eating. If the proper treatment is not sought and delivered, these complaints are so destructive that can eventually lead to a fatal conclusion.
It is common for people to imagine that the root cause of eating disorders is quite simply body image and self-esteem issues. Whilst this can be the cause in some cases, often a distressing and major event in someone’s life can be the real reason at the heart of the matter. Abuse of some kind or a distressing bereavement, can be the catalyst that triggers the destructive desire to assert some level of control over life with food. There is also the obvious desire in some cases to try and conform to unattainable body images portrayed by the media and the fashion industry.
Everybody has different eating habits or styles that, for the most part, allow us to lead a healthy normal life. Unfortunately, some people’s eating habits are driven by an intense, and life consuming, fear of being fat which actually causes great damage to their health. There are three main behaviours associated with eating disorders which are: eating too much, eating too little, and various harmful ways of avoiding the intake of calories.
Although women and girls are ten times more likely to suffer from Anorexia or Bulimia, men and boys can suffer from these disorders as well. In fact, it is becoming more common to find cases of these disorders today than it has been in the past. It seems to be the case that it is more common for someone to suffer from an eating disorder, if they have been overweight as a child, although this is not always the case.
Anorexia may be a concern if some is: worrying more than normal about their weight, eating less and less, exercising to excess, smoking more and chewing gum, uninterested in sex, and continually losing weight, even after reaching a safe weight for their height and age.
The signs of Bulimia are: intense worrying about weight, binge eating, vomiting or using laxatives to avoid taking on calories, irregular menstrual periods in females, feeling tired and guilty and staying the normal weight despite continued and persistent attempts to diet.