Everything you need to know about eating disorders

We live in a strange world. It seems that everyone has to be skinny to be beautiful. And the constant emergence of new fad diets (usually bad diets) almost every week that promise you’ll lose weight fast, it might seem like anyone can lose weight quickly and without much effort. The problem with these diets is that they tend to be ineffective and can even be dangerous to your health, both in the short and long term.

There are many products on the market and many marketing campaigns designed exactly to convince you to try these products and diets. From diet pills, juicing cleanses, lists of good foods vs. bad foods to lose weight, even supplements that replace or enhance natural ingredients. And what may start out simply as a way to lose a few pounds can quickly turn into an eating disorder.

Eating disorders are very serious and, in some cases, can even lead to death. They cause serious problems in your eating behaviors and need to be treated.

Eating disorders most often develop during adolescence and young adulthood, and are more common among girls and women. Although no one knows exactly what causes them, researchers believe it is a combination of behavioral, biological, psychological, genetic, and social factors. They also often live with depression, problems coping with emotions, anxiety, low self-esteem and substance abuse.

There are some signs and symptoms that people experience when they have an eating disorder:

* Continue a strict diet even when they are already underweight;

* If someone keeps gaining and losing weight, constantly;

* When someone is obsessed with counting calories;

* Some people simply cut their food into small pieces and avoid eating when they are with other people. This could be another sign of an eating disorder;

* If they try to avoid family and friends; they just tend to isolate themselves;

* When people are depressed.

This could help you find out if someone you know has this problem and help you seek treatment.

When you hear about eating disorders, they mainly refer to three: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder.

* Anorexia nervosa:

When someone has anorexia nervosa, they usually see themselves as overweight, even if they are underweight. You can identify this mental illness if you notice that the person simply continues to weigh, eats a small amount of food, and is very picky about certain foods.

Anorexia nervosa can cause the interruption of menstruation, loss of skin integrity, loss of bone mass, and even increase the risk of heart problems. It has the highest death rate among all mental disorders and it is not only due to complications associated with starvation. In extreme situations, anorexia can be the cause that leads to suicide.

* Bulimia nervosa:

When someone has bulimia nervosa, they usually eat a lot of food and just can’t help it. After that, they feel so guilty about what they have done and just force vomit. Others even go further: they exercise too much, take diuretics and laxatives, or a combination of both.

The problem with recognizing that someone has bulimia nervosa is that these people tend to maintain their weight. So unless you are around them for extended periods during the day, you may not even be aware that they have this problem.

* Binge eating disorder:

Binge eating disorder is related to bulimia nervosa. The difference is that when someone is binge-eating, they simply eat without having any control. But they won’t vomit or take any medicine afterward. Therefore, they are usually obese or overweight.

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