Eating disorders often go unnoticed at the beginning of their development due to their pervasive nature. Some eating disorders begin with an interest in healthy eating or weight loss while others are coping mechanisms to deal with trauma, anxiety, depression, shame, and low self-esteem.
At its core, eating disorders are behavioral conditions characterized by significant and persistent disturbances in eating behaviors associated with emotional distress and incessant preoccupations surrounding food and body image.
According to the DSM-V, there are 6 types of eating disorders, namely:
At this time, 7.8% of the global population will suffer from an eating disorder in their lifetime with binge eating disorder being the most prevalent (5.5%). Moreover, eating disorders have been on a rise in the last decade, while disordered eating has become increasingly normalized.
Statistically, adolescents and young adults are more vulnerable to disordered eating with 70% of them engaging in harmful weight loss activities to control their weight (EQSJS). Now more than ever, people are subject to struggling with food regardless of age, sex, gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.
Disordered eating can be described similarly to an eating disorder without fitting into a narrow diagnosis criterion. Someone who struggles with their relationship with food and body image is vulnerable to disordered eating and prone to developing an eating disorder.
The damage and harm of disordered eating can be equally as distressing as an eating disorder and warrants seeking help from a health professional.
For more information on the disordered eating spectrum,
Look down below !
It can be difficult to discern healthy eating from disordered eating because our standards for ''healthy eating habits'' are greatly influenced by societal pressures. As a result, it is common for most people to engage in disordered eating without noticing it. It becomes a problem when eating patterns become dysfunctional, obsessive, and distressing.
Although this continuum doesn't illustrate all the possible concerns, it is important to recognize that your personal experience is valid and worth exploring thoroughly. If you are concerned that you or a loved one displays signs of disordered or eating disorders, please reach out to find out how I can help you.
Earning trust in your body and in yourself
Learning to make satisfying meals and snacks suited to meet your needs
Unpacking fears, shame and unwanted eating behaviours
Reliable information that is evidence-based while debunking myths, diet fads and junk science
providing you the support you need
Understanding your body, its metabolism, its needs and how it processes nutrients
Reconnecting with your body's hunger and satiety cues
You don't need to have an eating disorder or a diagnosis to seek help from a nutritionnist to improve your relationship with food and body. As explained here, you can fall on a spectrum where navigating food is complicated and overwhelming. Food preoccupations are difficult to manage and significantly impact other areas of your life. A nutritionnist can bring structure and flexibility to your diet so you have more space to do the things you love.
My practice is weight-neutral, which means I promote a healthy weight for each individual based on their natural set-point.
Reaching a target weight range can sometimes be a goal for nutrition therapy IF it is meant to improve your health, but it is not always a priority.
In most eating disorder cases, monitoring weight is done on a regular basis.