New Oakland Child-Adolescent and Family Center
Eating disorders involve extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviors involving weight and food. People suffering eating disorders are so preoccupied with food and weight that they can often focus on little else. This obsession can cause serious physical problems, to the point of being life-threatening. It's estimated that 75-80% of people with eating disorders are females, but binge-eating disorder appears to affect almost as many males as females.
The three most common eating disorders are:
- Anorexia Nervosa: Obsessed with food and being thin, sometimes to the point of deadly self-starvation
- Bulimia Nervosa: Eating large amounts of food then ridding the calories by vomiting or excessive exercise.
- Binge Eating: Eating excessive amounts even when not hungry. One may then diet or eat normal meals, triggering a new round of bingeing. A binge-eater may range from normal weight to obese
Treatments for eating disorders usually involve psychotherapy, nutritional education, family counseling, medications and hospitalization.