“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.”
~ A. A. Milne
Eating is a natural and an essential part of life. The function of food is to nourish the body, but was created to be enjoyed by human beings, as well. For many, few thoughts are more exaggerated or obsessed, than those who struggle with eating disorders. An eating disorder cannot only consume your every thought, but it can, and often does, consume your very existence. You become a prisoner of your own thoughts, and are robbed of many of the joys of everyday living.
As a clinician, I have worked with many who have struggled with eating disorders and disordered eating. Eating disorders can be defined as disorders that are characterized by abnormal or disturbed eating habits. “An eating disorder is a collection of interrelated eating habits, weight management practices and attitudes about food, weight and body shape that have become disordered… This disordered eating behavior is usually an effort to solve a variety of emotional difficulties about which the individual feels out of control. Males and females of all social and economic classes, races and intelligence levels can develop an eating disorder.” (PBS, Online, 2013) Hollywood perpetuates many of these distorted ideals by placing a high value on vanity and perfection. Teenagers are especially impacted by these unrealistic standards, and are daunted by societal pressures to the point of self-sabotage and self-abuse. Unfortunately, in the case of eating disorders and disordered eating, food is the weapon of choice and the individual is the victim of faulty beliefs generated by himself/herself.
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) has three primary classifications for eating disorders, they are: Anorexia Nervosa, Binge Eating, and Bulmia Nervosa.
The DSM-5 has defined the primary types and symptoms of eating disorders as being:
*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA