Eating disorders are influenced by a combination of biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors, so understanding them can feel like an uphill battle. But knowing the facts is an important first step toward healing. That’s why we’ve gathered a variety of resources to shine some light on these complex illnesses. Still have questions? Contact us to learn more.
What is Anorexia?
Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized most notably by weight loss and nutrient deficiency. Those with anorexia have difficulty maintaining an appropriate weight for their size and shape. They may restrict their calorie intake, exercise compulsively, use laxatives, and/or purge in order to keep their weight low. Anorexia affects people of all genders, ages, or any other demographic categorizations. Anorexia cannot be diagnosed by simply looking at a person, because people can suffer from anorexia without looking like the stereotypical thin image. Those who live in larger bodies can be underweight and suffer from anorexia that is equally serious and severe.
Do you restrict what you eat to small quantities and a narrow variety of foods, but you aren’t sure If it’s anorexia? Do you wake up frequently, feeling you need to eat before you can go back to bed? Do you purge without binge eating? If you are experiencing eating disorder behaviors that don’t quite fall into the categories of Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, or Binge Eating Disorder, you may have a condition that is classified as Other Specified Feeding and Eating Disorder (OSFED). Formerly known as Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS), OSFED was developed to encompass conditions that did not meet diagnostic criteria for Anorexia Nervosa or Bulimia Nervosa but were still significant feeding or eating disorders (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).