Nutrition and Eating Disorders

Concerned you may have an eating disorder? Take this anonymous screening tool now!


Signs of Problem Eating Can Include:
Obsession with body image, food, or weight
Skipping meals
Fear of loss of control over eating
Self-induced purging
Abuse of laxatives, water pills, or diet pills
Change in or absence of menstrual periods
Consuming large amounts of food at one time
Secrecy with eating behaviors
Feelings of shame
Excessive weight loss or gain
Withdrawal from regular activities and friends

Types of Eating Disorders

Anorexia Nervosa: potentially life threatening eating disorder characterized by self starvation and an excessive obsession with weight loss. 

Bulimia: potentially life threatening eating disorder characterized by binge eating followed by a compensatory behavior, such as vomiting or using laxatives. 

Binge Eating/Compulsive Overeating: is an eating disorder characterized by recurring binge eating.

Disordered Eating

Over Eating: compulsive over eating is the excessive consumption of food (bingeing), often eating thousands of calories at one time.  This is not followed by purging as in bulimia.

Night Eating: night eating syndrome is characterized by a lack of appetite in the morning and overeating at night with agitation and insomnia.

Closet Eating: A subset of binge eating, closet eating refers to a person that eats normal meals in from of other.  When they are alone, the individual binges on food.  This food is typically high calorie, comfort foods or sugary sweets.

Othorexia: orthorexia nervosa is a fixation on eating only healthy foods.

EDNOS (Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified): An individual that is struggling with eating disorder thoughts, feelings or behaviors, but does not have all the symptoms of anorexia or bulimia.


Tips for Helping a Friend
Express your care and concern without judgment or criticism
Encourage your friend to seek professional help
Let your friend know that you are there to provide support and help. Be patient
Avoid commenting on your friend's appearance, as it may be misinterpreted as either a compliment or criticism.
Learn as much as you can about eating disorders. Know the difference between normal obsessive nutrition and exercise habits.