Eating disorders are a serious condition where you are so preoccupied with weight and food that you often can’t focus on anything else around you. Common eating disorders are bulimia, anorexia nervosa, and binge-eating. An eating disorder can cause a number of serious physical problems.
When the condition is at its worst, the effects can be life-threatening. Most of those who struggle with eating disorders are females, but males can also suffer from the condition. One of the biggest exceptions is that of binge-eating, which affects just as many males as it does females.
Risk Factors Attributing to an Eating Disorder
Certain events and situations increase the risk of struggling with some type of eating disorder or another. Common risk factors are:
– Being female. Teenage girls and younger women are more prone to dealing with an eating disorder than teenage boys or younger men.
– Age. Even though an eating disorder can happen at any age, it is far more common to occur during the teenage years and the early part of the 20s.
– Family history. Evidence indicates that those who struggle with some type of eating disorder have someone in their family who has struggled with the same thing.
– Emotional Disorders. Individuals who struggle with anxiety disorders, depression, and obsessive-compulsive disorder are a lot more likely to end up suffering from an eating disorder.
– Dieting. Individuals who start off losing weight are often reinforced by the positive comments they receive from others and their appearance changing and shaping into what they want. This can cause some individuals to take their dieting to extremes, which leads to an eating disorder of some sort.
– Transitions. Regardless of whether that means moving, going to college, dealing with a relationship breakup or getting a new job, change tends to bring on emotional distress, which increases your susceptibility to dealing with an eating disorder.
– Work, artistic and sports activities. Actors, athletes, dancers, models, and television personalities are at an increased risk of suffering from an eating disorder.
The disorders are especially common amongst ballerinas, runners, gymnasts, and wrestlers. Parents and coaches often contribute to these eating disorders by encouraging weight loss, even though they might not realize it at first.