Causes: Eating disorders are usually caused by the desire to gain control over your life and to be thin. They typically affect people who have low self-esteem, emotional problems and a distorted view of their own body.
Effect: If a person has anorexia, they fear food, restrict what they eat and exercise excessively, feeling they are overweight even when in reality they are dangerously thin. This causes all sorts of health problems, including brittle bones, malnutrition, dehydration, infertility, fainting and heart damage. Anorexia may lead to death.
A person with Bulimia also fears gaining weight, but unlike anorexia they binge on high-calorie food in between periods of fasting, then make themselves vomit or abuse laxatives to try to get rid of the calories. People with bulimia usually have a normal body weight. The effects of bulimia include an irregular heartbeat, kidney damage and eroded tooth enamel.
- If your bodyweight is very low, it’s important that you seek professional help from your doctor or an eating disorders clinic
- Keeping a diary of your food intake and feelings may help
- Follow an eating plan
- Eat small, regular amounts of food that is high in nutrients
- Family therapy