Eating disorders can affect anyone and are extremely common, affecting millions of people each year.
The main characteristic of an eating disorder is the individual’s obsession with their weight. These obsessive thoughts can lead to severe consequences in both their health and their actions.
Research has shown that females are much more likely to develop anorexia and bulimia than males, although males can suffer from both eating disorders too.
However this is not the case with binge-eating disorder, which seems to develop in almost as many males as females.
The 3 main eating disorders are as follows:
Anorexia affects approximately 60,000 to 200,000 people, and it’s estimated that 1% of people aged between 10 and 20 suffer from anorexia each year.
The condition can be characterised by an obsession with weight loss resulting in refusal to eat or irregularity in eating patterns.
Sufferers become obsessive about eating rituals and develop an unusual way of eating, e.g. skipping meals and avoiding certain food, selecting a small variety of foods and only eating them in very small quantities. This is all usually done secretly.
* Extreme body weight loss results from malnutrition
* Absence of menstruation in women and testosterone in men
* Extreme tiredness and weakness
* Irritability and depression
* Hair loss on the head or excessive fine bodily hair growth
* Dry skin
* Feeling guilty and depressed
* Bloating and constipation
* More sensitive to bruising
Long term side effects
* Heart problems or low heart rate
* Poor blood circulation
Approximately 4% of people aged 16 – 25 suffer from bulimia. Like anorexia, bulimia is a serious psychological eating disorder that can be life threatening if left untreated.
Bulimia nervosa can be characterised by the constant fear of putting on weight and the use of unnatural ways to get rid of the food (e.g. forced vomiting, taking laxatives or excessive exercise).
An individual suffering with bulimia will usually binge eat (often comfort foods with high levels of sugar and calories) and then feel guilty enough to force themselves to get rid of the food.
Some individuals will force themselves to get rid of the food even if they haven’t had a binge, but feel they have eaten more than they should have. As many sufferers are deeply ashamed of their behaviour, they almost always relieve themselves by forced vomiting in secret.
* Frequent stomach pains
* Feeling weak
* Disruption of the menstruation cycle
* Feeling dehydrated
* Dramatic increase in food intake yet no weight change
* Intense exercise regime
* Isolation from friends and family
* Impulsive behaviour
* Frail hair or nails
* Dry skin
* Tooth and gum problems
Long term side effects
* Heart problems or irregular heart beat
* Kidney problems
* Chronic irregular bowel movements
* Problems in pregnancy
Although binge-eating disorder is not as well known as anorexia or bulimia, it still affects millions of people around the world and research suggests it affects about 2% of all adults.
Binge-eating disorder is characterised by eating large amounts of food and being unable to control the habit. Unlike bulimia, individuals suffering from this disorder do not vomit or use laxatives to relieve themselves, and are therefore very likely to gain weight.
Many sufferers eat secretly and then feel guilty and shameful about what they are doing, and often don’t seek help for this reason.
* Eating in secret
* Eating even though full
* Eating frequently in large quantities
* Eating when sad, lonely or bored
* Feeling out of control of the situation
* Low self-esteem and confidence
* Feelings of regret, guilt and shame
* Obsessed with food and body
Long term side effects Heart problems
# Liver and kidney problems
# Type 2 diabetes
# Gall bladder disease
# Certain types of cancer
Mindset coaching is extremely useful for the treatment of eating disorders. Mindset coaching usually involved a variety of modalities such as positive psychology, NLP, CBT, hypnotherapy and psychotherapy. This coaching can give you the skills needed to relax and access your unconscious mind to discover the true, root cause of the disorder.
The aim of this therapy is to use the power of logic and suggestion to change habits and thoughts surrounding certain things. Often, regression techniques can prove helpful because they tap into your subconscious to reveal an event, comment or situation that may have contributed to the development of your eating disorder.
Mindset coaching can also help you change the way you think about yourself. Learning to love yourself and boost your confidence and self-esteem again is an important part of the recovery process. You can also learn new ways of thinking about eating, gradually improving your relationship with food.
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