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My Body & Wellness

Eating Disorders

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Added August 01, 2013

Dangers of Eating Disorders & How You Can Reach Out For Help

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Has something about your friend changed lately? At first she looked a little leaner — great! Then maybe she started dropping weight fast. Worried? We don’t blame you. Your friend may have an eating disorder. Eating disorders are abnormal eating habits that can threaten your health or even your life. It is very serious. Find out the common signs, health risks and how you can reach out for help.


Signs of an Eating Disorder

There are two main types of eating disorders: anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. Girls with either can show these signs:


  • Sudden change in eating habits: Does a friend suddenly say “no” to some of their favorite foods? Or does she always have an excuse for not eating, like she’s not hungry, she just ate or she feels sick? On the reverse, does she binge eat? Does she eat alone instead of with you and friends?

  • Low confidence: Your friend may look great, but she won’t believe you when you tell her. She seems to put herself, her weight and her looks down a lot.

  • Extra exercise and focus on her weight: Is your friend always at the gym these days? Or at home doing the same exercise DVDs? Does she pick working out over hanging out? Has she become overly concerned about her weight?

  • General withdrawal: Where did the bubbly girl you once know go? Have her mood swings become the new norm?


If you notice any of these signs, look to talk to a trusted adult about your concerns for your friend.


Health Risks

Eating disorders don’t just affect weight — they affect the whole body. To be healthy, your body needs nourishment from food. It uses it for energy. Here are some of the health risks and dangers of an eating disorder:


  • Malnutrition (lacking nutrition)
  • Dehydration
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • Swelling
  • Low blood pressure
  • Dry skin and hair, brittle hair and nails, hair loss
  • Liver failure
  • Infertility
  • Seizures
  • And many more


How to Help

First, talk to a trusted adult with your concerns for your friend. The adult can help determine what to do next. If your friend does have an eating disorder, her recovery will take some time and might include therapy, medication and maybe hospitalization. It’s important that they see a professional for help. The professional will have the expertise to find the right help.


For additional information or to talk to an expert, you could contact these organizations:


  • National Eating Disorders Association by calling 800-931-2237
  • International Mental Health Referral Service by calling 800-THERAPIST or 800-843-7274
  • National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associate Disorders (ANAD) by calling 847-831-3438
  • —Anorexia Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders
  • Rader Programs by calling 800-841-1515
  • Referrals to Eating Disorder Specialists (US and Canada): The Renfrew Center by calling 800-RENFREW or 800-736-3739

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comments so far
Posted June 30, 2014
you guys got it all wrong no matter how out of shape you are or how to skinny you are you are so lucky that you a re here in the world id you are to skinny then gain 1 or 2 pounds if you are fat then loose it or try to but I lost4 pounds I was 112 pounds now im 108 pounds if you have any questions how to loose or gain any pounds just ask me ok......ok hope it helped and remember think positive about YOU!!!!!!!!!!!! bye:)
Toot toot
Toot toot
Posted June 30, 2014
Eating disorders are when you are craving for some food that mabey you don't like are that you're not aposose to have
CuCu Birdie
CuCu Birdie
Posted May 30, 2014
I've tried to quit eating once.... I felt like I didn't have the push to get a diet after so many years of trying! I still haven't. But I didn't eat for one whole day, and my body freaked out. At 3am it took me four Almond Joys to calm my stomach down, I thought I was going to die... SO DON'T TRY IT!
CuCu Birdie
CuCu Birdie
Posted May 30, 2014
@JustAnotherGirl- Tell your friend's parents! Make sure you tell them not to mention your name though.
CuCu Birdie
CuCu Birdie
Posted May 30, 2014
@Blakelover4life- How old are you? My friend is skinny, weighs 70lbs, and has a crush on a guys named Blake.... is you're name Rosie possibly?
Posted June 09, 2014
I don't wanna be too skinny not too fat. If I'm way too skinny, I would look like a skeleton. If I got fat, I wouldn't look that pretty. I just try to have a normal weigh for my age.
Posted April 09, 2014
To be honest, I've been going through dehydration and depression for a few years now. But since I started listening to my doctor about my habits, I am healthy now.
Posted March 29, 2014
I don't like the way i look. I'v been going through depression for the past few months, an I think i may be developing an eating disorder. But, i'm not ready to talk. HELP!
Posted March 01, 2014
uhm I don't really know what you would call this or just GROWING but sometimes I barely feel like eating anything all day (seriously one day I ate 5 pieces of bacon for breakfast then nothing else until next day) and other days I eat literally ALL the snack stuff not to mention bigger meals?
Posted March 29, 2014
I just got over my anorexia and I'm glad I did. My friends and family were really worried. I only told two or so friends about my problem and they were there to help me. ^~^ girls, if you're ever feeling down about your appearance, just listen to a fun song and dance around a bit, or hangout with friends. Stay strong lovelies!
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