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Eating disorders

Eating​ ​disorders​ ​are​ ​serious​ ​and​ ​have​ ​a​ ​big​ ​impact​ ​on​ ​someone’s health.​ ​We’re​ ​here​ ​to​ ​help.​ ​Learn​ ​more​ ​about​ ​eating​ ​disorders, what​ ​the​ ​warning​ ​signs​ ​are,​ ​and​ ​who​ ​can​ ​help​ you ​change​ ​your relationship​ ​with​ ​food.

Girl looking anxious with thought bubbles about food, gym equipment, scales

What​ ​is​ ​an​ ​eating​ ​disorder?

It’s​ ​more​ ​than​ ​just​ ​eating​ ​too​ ​little​ ​or​ ​too​ ​much.​ ​It’s​ ​when​ ​someone​ ​has​ ​an unhealthy​ ​focus​ ​on​ ​eating,​ ​exercising,​ ​or​ ​their​ ​body​ ​size​ ​or​ ​shape.

Here’s​ ​what​ ​you​ ​need​ ​to​ ​know​ ​about​ ​eating​ ​disorders: 

  • You​ ​can’t​ ​always​ ​tell​ ​if​ ​someone​ ​has​ ​an​ ​eating​ ​disorder​ ​just​ ​by​ ​looking at​ ​them
  • Both​ ​girls​ ​and​ ​guys​ ​of​ ​any​ ​age​ ​can​ ​develop​ ​an​ ​eating​ ​disorder 
  • Eating​ ​disorders​ ​are​ ​not​ ​a​ ​diet​ ​gone​ ​wrong​ ​or​ ​a​ ​cry​ ​for​ ​attention 
  • Sometimes​ ​eating​ ​disorders​ ​develop​ ​as​ ​a​ ​way​ ​for​ ​someone​ ​to​ ​feel​ ​in control​ ​of​ ​emotions​ ​or​ ​something​ ​that​ ​is​ ​happening​ ​in​ ​their​ ​life 
  • Eating​ ​disorders​ ​can​ ​have​ ​a​ ​lifelong​ ​impact​ ​on​ ​someone’s​ ​health 
  • Eating​ ​disorders​ ​are​ ​very​ ​serious​ ​and​ ​it’s​ ​important​ ​to​ ​get​ ​support 
  • Help​ ​is​ ​available​ ​and​ ​recovery​ ​is​ ​possible

Types of eating disorders

Eating disorders can come in many forms. Here are the most common:

Anorexia Nervosa

Bulimia Nervosa

Binge Eating Disorder

Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorders (OSFED)

How to tell if your relationship with food is becoming unhealthy?

You may notice changes in the way you:

Look
Feel
Act
Think

Recognising the signs and symptoms

Here are some of the most common warning signs and symptoms

How you look:

  • Sudden​ ​weight​ ​loss​ ​or​ ​gain
  • Your look​ ​tired​ ​and​ ​worn-out
  • Your​ ​clothing​ ​style​ ​has​ ​changed
  • Changes​ ​in​ ​the​ ​way​ ​your​ ​hair,​ ​skin​ ​and​ ​nails​ ​look

 

You may feel:

  • Unhappy​ ​with​ ​your​ ​body​ ​shape​ ​or​ ​size
  • Worried,​ ​upset​ ​or​ ​guilty​ ​after​ ​eating
  • Moody,​ ​irritable​ ​or​ ​have​ ​low​ ​energy
  • Faint,​ ​dizzy​ ​or​ ​weak
  • Nervous​ ​or​ ​out​ ​of​ ​control​ ​around​ ​food
  • Cold​ ​all​ ​the​ ​time​ ​–​ ​even​ ​in​ ​warm​ ​weather

 

How you act:

  • Steal​ ​or​ ​hide​ ​food
  • Withdraw​ ​from​ ​your​ ​friends
  • Exercise​ ​often​ ​or​ ​excessively
  • Vomit​ ​after​ ​meals​ ​or​ ​use​ ​laxatives
  • Eat​ ​in​ ​secret​ ​or​ ​avoid​ ​eating​ ​with​ ​others
  • Diet,​ ​overeat,​ ​fast​ ​or​ ​change​ ​the​ ​way​ ​you​ ​eat

 

How you think:

  • Difficulty​ ​concentrating
  • Have​ ​a​ ​strong​ ​fear​ ​of​ ​gaining​ ​weight
  • View​ ​your​ ​body​ ​differently​ ​than​ ​others​ ​do
  • Worried​ ​about​ ​what​ ​you​ ​eat​ ​or​ ​the​ ​way​ ​you​ ​eat
  • Constantly​ ​think​ ​about​ ​food,​ ​eating​ ​or​ ​body​ ​weight

 

Who can help?

If you're worried about your eating habits, it's important to seek help as soon as possible.

Here's who can help:

 

Parent or trusted adult
School counsellor
Psychologist
Doctor or nurse
Kids Helpline
Service that specialises in eating disorders

You're not alone

With help you can start to change your relationship with food

If​ ​you​ ​notice​ ​any​ ​of​ ​these​ ​signs​ ​or​ ​you’re​ ​worried​ ​about​ ​your​ ​eating​ ​and exercise​ ​habits​ ​–​ ​we’re​ ​here​ ​to​ ​help. 

Give​ ​us​ ​a​ ​call,​ ​start​ ​a​ ​WebChat​ ​or​ ​email​ ​us​ ​today.

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