Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness according to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, Inc. Eating disorders effect up to 24 million people of all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder in the U.S, and 70 million worldwide, according to The Renfrew Center Foundation for Eating Disorders, “Eating Disorders 101 Guide.
Eating disorders commonly recognized in medical diagnosis and treatment manuals include Anorexia nervosa, Bulimia nervosa, Eating disorders not otherwise specified, Binge eating disorder, and Pica. There are however other eating disorders that are not so recognized and include Compulsive overeating (which can result from Binge eating disorder), Diabulimia, Drunkorexia, Night eating syndrome, Orthorexia nervosa, Pregorexia, Purging disorder, and Rumination.
The 3 most common eating disorders and their characteristics include;
Anorexia nervosa – a disorder characterized by an intense fear of gaining weight, a distorted perception of body weight, the development of unusual eating habits such as avoiding food and meals, consuming a select few number of foods in small amounts, weighing all food before eating, and excessive, compulsive calories counting and, in some cases exercise excessively. It is the third most common chronic illness among adolescents.
Bulimia nervosa – a disorder characterized by episodes of the consumption of excessive amount of food (binging) followed by purging the body of this food by inducing vomiting or the use of diuretics land/or laxatives. Individuals engaged in this practice also have an intense fear of weight gain.
Binge-eating disorder – a disorder characterized by a loss of control over eating behaviors, frequent episodes of compulsive overeating, by individuals who often eat alone and very quickly, eating to a point of fullness discomfort, regardless of their level of hungry or fullness. They often feel shame or guilt over their actions. Unlike compulsive overeating individuals with BED lack any compulsion to overeat and do not spend a great deal of time fantasizing about food.
Binge eating disorder (BED) is the most common eating disorder in the United States. Unlike anorexia and bulimia, that statistically effect more women than men, according to the National Eating Disorders Association, “binge-eating disorder occurs almost as often in men as in women,” affecting 3.5% of females and 2% of males. About two percent of all adults in the United States ... as many as four million people. BED typically strikes individuals sometime between adolescence and the early twenties.
This information is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical/nutritional/fitness advice.
Additional Statistics published by the National Association of Anorexia, Nervosa and Associated Disorders, Inc. (ANAD) indicate that:
- Up to 24 million people of all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder (anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder) in the U.S.
- Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.
- Women are much more likely than men to develop an eating disorder.
- Only an estimated 5 to 15 percent of people with anorexia or bulimia are male.
- An estimated 2 to 5 percent of Americans experience binge-eating disorder in a 6-month period.
- An estimated 20% of people suffering from anorexia will prematurely die from complications related to their eating disorder, including suicide and heart problems.
Resources: National Association of Anorexia, Nervosa and Associated Disorders, Inc., The Renfrew Center Foundation for Eating Disorders, Wikipedia.com, Answere.com, MayoClinic.com, American Psychiatric Association, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , National Institute of Health’s PubMed, TreatmentCenter.net, wiktionary.org, Department of Psychiatry Penn Behavioral Health - Perelman school of medicine University of Pennsylvania, WebMD.com, University of Maryland Medical Center Medical Reports,
This information is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical/nutritional/fitness advice. Additional future research and additional published studies may offer additional information that may or may not support information presented.