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What Types Of Eating Disorders Are There

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What Causes Eating Disorders To Develop

6 Types of Eating Disorders

Its difficult to know for certain what might cause the onset of an eating disorder. However, experts believe a variety of factors could be to blame.

Research into the genetics of eating disorders indicates there may be a greater chance of experiencing an eating disorder if members of your family had similar issues. Twin and adoption studies involving twins separated at birth and adopted by different families found if one twin develops an eating disorder, the other has a 50% chance of developing one as well.

Personality traits can also increase the risk of eating disorders. Personality characteristics such as neuroticism, impulsivity, and perfectionism are linked to a higher rate of eating disorders.Notably, certain eating disorders appear almost non-existent in cultures that havent been exposed to Western ideals of body shape. This proves that the media we consume can contribute to problematic eating.

Some experts also indicate differences in brain structure and biology might have something to do with the development of eating disorders. In particular, levels of the brains dopamine and serotonin are common factors in succumbing to eating disorders.

How Is An Eating Disorder Treated

Treatment depends on the eating disorder, its cause, and your overall health. Your doctor may evaluate your nutritional intake, refer you to a mental health professional, or hospitalize you if your disorder has become life-threatening.

In some cases, psychotherapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy or family therapy, can help address the social or emotional issues that may be causing your disorder.

Theres no medication that can fully treat an eating disorder. But some medications can help control symptoms of the anxiety or depressive disorder that may be causing or aggravating your eating disorder. These can include anti-anxiety medicines or antidepressants.

Reducing your stress through yoga, meditation, or other relaxation techniques can also help you control your eating disorder.

How Is Orthorexia Diagnosed

Because orthorexia has no formal diagnostic criteria, its unclear whether orthorexia is a unique eating disorder, a part of another eating disorder such as anorexia nervosa, or a subtype of OCD.

That said, there are many proposed diagnostic tools that healthcare professionals may use to diagnose orthorexia. These include :

  • ORTO-15. This is a 15-question screening tool used to identify symptoms and behaviors related to orthorexia. A score of 40 is the cutoff for diagnosis. However, this tool has been criticized for its inability to differentiate between pathological eating behaviors and eating-related values .
  • ORTO-R. This newer version of ORTO-15 includes the six most relevant questions related to orthorexia symptoms and behaviors.
  • Bratman Orthorexia Test . This is a 10-question screening tool consisting of Yes/No responses. The questions are based on obsessive thinking about food, beliefs about nutrition and health, restriction, and other factors. However, its not commonly used.
  • Eating Habits Questionnaire . This 21-item questionnaire measures knowledge, positive vs. negative feelings, and problematic behaviors related to healthy eating. However, studies have suggested that it needs improvement before it can be a valid diagnostic tool for orthorexia.

To make the distinction between healthy eating and orthorexia clearer, Bratman and Dunn proposed the following two-part diagnostic criteria: an obsessive focus on healthy eating and behavior that disrupts daily life .

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Classification Of Eating Disorders

Now there are two guidelines, using which psychologists, psychotherapists, psychiatrists can make one or another diagnosis.

  • “DSM-5” used in America.

  • “MKD-10” – in Europe and Russia.

  • The international classifier of diseases “ICD-10” includes:

    Anorexia nervosa is a mental disorder that is characterized by deliberate weight loss, that is, a person deliberately reduces weight, this is caused and maintained by the patient himself.

    Bulimia nervosa is a disorder that is characterized by repetitive bouts of overeating, excessive weight control, in order to control body weight, a sick person with bulimia uses some form of compensation. For example, the urge to vomit, the use of laxatives, diuretics , attempts to starve in order to compensate for what is eaten during an overeating attack.

    As for psychogenic vomiting, it does not have an overeating attack, there is only a component of the urge to vomit, it can be as a way of emotional regulation, that is, it is a way to cope with some strong, very unpleasant emotions, it can be a symptom of other disorders

    Bulimia consists of two parts: it is an attack of overeating and the second part is an attack of compensation.

    Psychogenic vomiting has only a vomiting-inducing component. It may also be a way of emotional regulation and may be a symptom of other disorders. For example, in a hypochondriacal disorder, this will be only one of the symptoms, that is, it will no longer be a way to cope with emotions, but a symptom of another disease.

    Teens & Eating Disorders: Types Risk Factors Warning Signs & Next Steps

    Understanding Different Types Of Eating Disorders ð? â CAMHS Professionals

    Site Director at The Renfrew Center of New York City

    Eating disorders in teenagers are serious, complex conditions that include a pattern of eating behaviors that negatively impact an individuals health, emotions, and ability to function across settings including school, work, and relationships. In this post we review the common types of eating disorders, eating disorders in the adolescent population, early warning signs, and next steps for those in which these signs have been identified.

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    Signs And Symptoms Of Eating Disorders

    Living with an eating disorder can be challenging, especially since food is such a central part of our lives.

    It can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between an eating disorder and typical weight concerns or dietingespecially in a culture where dieting is common. It can also be hard to notice an eating disorder, because people who binge, purge, or starve themselves often hide their behavior. If you suspect someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder, check for these warning signs:

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    Eating disorders can affect people of all ages, weights, and backgrounds. Although there are more, listed below are three of the most common types of eating disorders and symptoms. It can also be noted that a large portion of individuals with eating disorders dont meet the full criteria for anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or binge-eating disorder, but instead may be diagnosed with Other Specified Feeding and Eating Disorders

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    Diagnosis Of An Eating Disorder

    The first step towards getting help for an eating disorder is usually to visit the GP. We have a leaflet that can help you with this appointment. If you’re not registered with a GP, you can learn more about how to do this in:

    The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network give evidence-based guidelines about how to treat different illnesses, recommends that if the GP thinks someone may have an eating disorder, they should immediately refer them to an eating disorder specialist for further assessment or treatment.

    Diagnosis is made by taking a history, which means talking to the person about their feelings and behaviour. It may also involve some physical tests, such as checking their height and weight, and blood tests. Diagnosis is usually essential to be able to access treatment. Each type of eating disorder has a list of criteria that doctors and healthcare professionals use to diagnose an eating disorder. You can read more about what might happen at a doctors appointment here, and what treatment involves here.

    What Is Binge Eating Disorder And What Are The Symptoms

    Eating Disorders: Various Types – Teenology 101

    People with BED may eat a lot of food in a short amount of time, even if they arent hungry. Emotional stress or destress often plays a role and might trigger a period of binge eating.

    A person might feel a sense of release or relief during a binge but experience feelings of shame or loss of control afterward .

    For a healthcare professional to diagnose BED, three or more of the following symptoms must be present:

    • eating much more rapidly than normal
    • eating until uncomfortably full
    • eating large amounts without feeling hungry
    • eating alone due to feelings of embarrassment and shame
    • feelings of guilt or disgust with oneself

    People with BED often experience feelings of extreme unhappiness and distress about their overeating, body shape, and weight (1,

    An episode of binge eating can be triggered by stress, dieting, negative feelings relating to body weight or body shape, the availability of food, or boredom .


    The causes of BED are not fully known. As with other eating disorders, a variety of genetic, environmental, social, and psychological risks are associated with its development.

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    How To Get Help For Different Types Of Eating Disorders

    Warning: This article discusses eating disorders, anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder, and body dysmorphic disorder.

    Despite what the name suggests, eating disorders are more than just having an unhealthy relationship with food. Eating disorders are mental health conditions that are nuanced and complex. There are several types of eating disorders, and the causes for having one are different for each individual. Ahead, find out more about the common types of eating disorders, their symptoms, and the types of treatment available, according to professional doctors.

    Are Teenagers Affected By Eating Disorders

    Teenagers can be especially susceptible to eating disorders because of hormonal changes during puberty and social pressure to look attractive or thin. These changes are normal, and your teenager may only practice unhealthy eating habits every once in a while.

    But if your teenager begins to obsess over their weight, appearance, or diet, or starts consistently eating too much or too little, they may be developing an eating disorder. Abnormal weight loss or weight gain may also be a sign of an eating disorder, especially if your teenager frequently makes negative comments about their body or perceived size.

    If you suspect your teenager has an eating disorder, be open and honest about your concerns. If theyre comfortable talking with you, be understanding and listen to their concerns. Also have them see a doctor, counselor, or therapist to address the social or emotional issues that may be causing their disorder.

    Research also suggests that men with eating disorders are underdiagnosed and undertreated. Theyre less likely to be diagnosed with an eating disorder, even when they exhibit similar symptoms as a woman.

    Research suggests that many young men with eating disorders dont seek treatment because they consider them stereotypically female disorders.

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    Types Of Eating Disorders

    There are many different types of eating disorder, this section covers the most common types.

    Anorexia nervosa

    People diagnosed with anorexia try to keep their weight as low as possible by not eating enough or over-exercising, or a combination of the two.

    Some symptoms include:

    • Trying to keep your weight as low as possible
    • Thinking you are overweight even if others say you are dangerously thin
    • Low self-esteem or negative self-image
    • Fear of gaining weight
    • Dismissive of the idea of eating more or encouragement from others to do so

    Bulimia nervosa

    You will have an unhealthy eating cycle if you have bulimia. You will eat a lot of food and then do something to yourself to stop weight gain. You may make yourself vomit, take laxatives or over-exercise. The eating is called binging and what you do after is called purging. You will usually have an average body weight. This may mean other people do not notice you are having these problems.

    Some symptoms include:

    • Binging eating large amounts of food in a short space of time with little control
    • Purging avoiding putting on weight by making yourself vomit, using laxatives or extreme amounts of exercise
    • Fear of gaining weight
    • Low self-esteem or negative self-image
    • Experiencing mood changes such as anxiety or tension

    Binge eating disorder

    Some symptoms include:

    How Are Eating Disorders Treated

    Types of Eating Disorders

    Eating disorders are best treated by a team that includes a doctor, dietitian, and therapist. Treatment includes nutrition counseling, medical care, and talk therapy . The doctor might prescribe medicine to treat binge eating, anxiety, depression, or other mental health concerns.

    The details of the treatment depend on the type of eating disorder and how severe it is. Some people are hospitalized because of extreme weight loss and medical complications.

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    Seeking Treatment For An Eating Disorder

    Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. At least one person dies as a direct result of an eating disorder every 62 minutes.

    It is important to know, however, that eating disorders are treatable. There is help available to those suffering from an eating disorder. You can visit the National Eating Disorders Association website for some useful tools. You can use this screening tool to determine if you or a loved one may be suffering from an eating disorder. You an also contact the NEDA helpline for support and resources.

    National Eating Disorders Awareness Week is February 25 – March 3, 2019. Were changing the conversation around food, body image, and eating disorders! Join the movement and #ComeAsYouAre, not as you think you should be.

    Rebecca Encao, MSMHC is both an instructor and a team lead for Southern New Hampshire University and has taught psychology and social science courses for SNHU since 2015. Prior to that she worked with eating disorder patients at Eating Recovery Center in Denver.

    What Are The Different Types Of Anorexia

    Eating disorders are mental disorders with seriously damaging physical and emotional consequences. They are not fads, phases or something that someone consciously chooses to take part in.

    If you or someone you love has an eating disorder, seek help from a healthcare practitioner that specializes in eating disorders. Dont know where to turn? We can help.

    Anorexia nervosa is likely the most well-known eating disorder. It generally develops during adolescence or young adulthood and tends to affect more women than men. Anorexia Nervosa sufferers generally view themselves as overweight, even if theyre dangerously underweight. They tend to constantly monitor their weight, avoid eating certain types of foods and severely restrict their calories.

    Common symptoms of anorexia nervosa include:

    • Being considerably underweight compared to people of similar age and height.
    • Very restricted eating patterns.
    • An intense fear of gaining weight or persistent behaviors to avoid gaining weight, despite being underweight.
    • A relentless pursuit of thinness and unwillingness to maintain a healthy weight.
    • A heavy influence of body weight or perceived body shape on self-esteem.
    • A distorted body image, including denial of being seriously underweight.

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    Teenagers And Eating Disorders

    Eating disorders often develop in the teen and young adult years, though can develop at any age, and are more common in females. There is no one exact cause, but rather a combination of biological, psychological, and environmental factors. Risk factors that are more common to teenagers, which may help explain the higher amount of eating disorder onset in this age group, include:


    • Genetic or familial factors, for example research indicates that eating disorders along with other mental health conditions tend to run in families.
    • Puberty, which promotes an increase in hormones, leading to physical, psychological, and emotional changes, including visible changes in body size and shape. Changes in weight are a natural and healthy part of development, though can create discomfort for teenagers and make them more vulnerable to appearance related comments. This is especially true if developing faster or slower than their peers.


    • Psychiatric co-morbidities such as depression, anxiety, OCD, ADHD, or trauma.
    • Negative body image, gender dysphoria, low self-esteem, perfectionism, impulsivity, and/or difficulty expressing and regulating emotions.

    Social or Environmental

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    In an emergency situation, hospitalization may be required. While there, your child may need a feeding tube to receive adequate nutrition.

    In most cases, this type of eating disorder is addressed before hospitalization is necessary. Nutritional counseling or regular meetings with a therapist can be very effective in helping your child to overcome their disorder. Your child may need to go on a specific diet and take prescribed nutritional supplements. This will help them catch up to a recommended weight while undergoing treatment.

    Once vitamin and mineral deficiencies are addressed, your child may become more alert and regular feeding may become easier.

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    Other Types Of Eating Disorders

    This eating disorders list includes disorders which are a combination of the signs and symptoms of anorexia, bulimia, binge eating and other disordered eating behavior. These types of eating disorders may, or may not, be officially recognized as a specific mental illness, but any time eating behaviors cause distress, they should be evaluated by a professional.

    You can read more about these other types of eating disorders here:

    What Are The Types Of Eating Disorders

    There are different types of eating disorders. Some people may have more than one type of eating disorder. Types include:

    • Anorexia nervosa: People with anorexia nervosa greatly restrict food and calories sometimes to the point of self-starvation. You can have anorexia at any body size. It is characterized by an obsessive desire to lose weight and a refusal to eat healthy amounts of food for your body type and activity level.
    • Bulimia nervosa: People diagnosed with bulimia nervosa binge or eat, or perceive they ate, large amounts of food over a short time. Afterward, they may force themselves to purge the calories in some way such as vomiting, using laxatives or exercising excessively to rid their body of the food and calories.
    • Binge eating disorder :Binge eating disorder is characterized by a person experiencing a loss of control over their eating. They eat, or perceive that they have eaten, large amounts of food in a short period of time. However, after binging they dont purge food or burn off calories with exercise. Instead, they feel uncomfortably full and may struggle with shame, regret, guilt or depression.

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