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Eating disorders blog

What are eating disorders?

The following are the definitions according to the DSMV:

Anorexia

•Restriction of intake leading to a significantly low body weight

•Intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat

•Disturbance in the way in which one’s body weight is experienced (denial regarding the low body weight)

Bulimia

•Recurrent episodes of binge eating

–Eating a large amount of food in a short time

–Lack of control during the episode

•Recurrent inappropriate compensatory behaviors in order to prevent weight gain

•The binge eating and compensatory behaviors both occur at least once a week for 3 months

•Self-evaluation is unduly influenced by body weight and shape

•The disturbance does not occur exclusively with anorexia

 

Binge eating disorder:

•Recurrent episodes of binge eating

•The binge eating episodes are associated with 3 or more of the following

            –Eating much more rapidly than normal

            –Eating until feeling uncomfortably full

            –Eating large amounts of food when not feeling physically hungry

            –Eating alone because of embarrassment re: amount of food

            –Feeling disgusted with oneself, depressed or guilty afterward

•Marked distress regarding the binge eating

•The binge eating occurs on average at least once a week for 3 months

•The binge eating is not associated with compensatory behavior

 

Other eating problems of concern:

Orthorexia: over-concern with healthy eating that becomes so restrictive that it interferes with a person’s nutritional intake and relationships.

There are many sub-clinical eating problems that may not be listed in the DSM but still need attention.  For example, eating problems that interfere with a person’s school, work and social relationships should be addressed within the therapeutic relationship. 

 

How do I know if I have an eating disorder?

 

Do you think about food so much that you cannot focus on work or school?

Do you have a fear of food? 

Does you fear of food interfere with your relationships with family and/or friends?

Are you restricting your food intake so that you are not getting the nutrients you need?  Or so that you can’t concentrate on school or work?

Are you bingeing and/or purging?

Do you exercise excessively to compensate for caloric intake?

Are you eating so rapidly that you feel you have no control?

Do you feel numb while you are eating?

Do you feel ashamed of your body?

Do you eat in secret?

 

These symptoms are indications that you are struggling with eating and body image issues and that you should seek help. 

Helpful Forms

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