There’s nothing wrong with being a gourmand or social media #foodporn obsessed geek who spends more time and energy thinking about food than the average person. However, if you find yourself constantly thinking about food to the point that it interferes with your life — regarding either the consumption of it, the guilt surrounding past meals, or avoidance of food altogether — it’s worth understanding eating disorders to help you decide if you could benefit from professional help in order to take your mind off of food. Understanding eating disorders is a critical way for you to stop dysfunctional eating patterns from becoming a chronic illness that can have lasting effects up on your physical and mental wellbeing.
Understanding Eating Disorders
There are three types of eating disorders that are recognized by the medical community: binge-eating, bulimia nervosa, and anorexia nervosa. Though not specifically classified as mental disorders, purging without binging and orthorexia are also patterns of disordered eating that can interfere with an individual’s life.
The least common but most deadly eating disorder is anorexia nervosa. In fact, it is the most fatal mental disorder overall; individuals with anorexia may either starve to death or commit suicide. Anorexia is characterized by the severe restriction of calories and often a dysmorphia in which people with the disorder believe they are overweight, even when extremely underweight.
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