Eating Disorder Awareness Week
26th Feb - 4th Mar 2018
This week is Eating Disorder Awareness Week with the campaign hashtag of #whywait, which is aimed at encouraging people to seek help and sooner, for it takes on average almost three years for someone with an eating disorder (ED) to ask for help.
Sadly, one in three adults cannot name a sign or a symptom of an eating disorder, and yet we know that the sooner someone gets treatment the more likely they are to make a full and fast recovery.
Working as a nutritional therapist and clinical hypnotherapist, I see eating disorders in all its guises in my clinic and corporate work, for it doesn’t have to be the more commonly known anxiety or bulimia that can affect people.
It can also be about those who become obsessed by ‘eating healthily’ and have huge guilt trips should a ‘bad’ food pass their lips (social media doesn’t help this either!), or for others they have a strict gym routine and food plan from which they will not deviate, to the point that it affects their social life. On the flip side there are those who are overweight and use food as an emotional crutch and have disordered eating/binge-eating behaviours, usually in secret.
We all have different food stories, but food should never have to be something that controls us – life is too short for that – and it most definitely should not be a weapon to harm ourselves.
Why do some people get an eating disorder?
I would argue that most of us have had a moment in our lives where we have become obsessed about food but for some this can spiral, and there are a million reasons as to why this can develop, from high anxiety, an overcritical or controlling upbringing, abuse, lack of love or low self-esteem or just from being a high achiever or a perfectionist …
For the individual it will be just that, individual. But eating disorders are a mental illness and they need help.
Possible signs of an eating disorder
· Lips – are they obsessive about food?
· Flips – Is their behaviour changing?
· Hips – Do they have distorted beliefs about their body size?
· Kips – Are they often tired or struggling to concentrate?
· Nips – Do they disappear to the toilet after meals?
· Skips – Have they started exercising excessively
Beat is the UK’s eating disorder charity which has loads of advice and help whether you yourself are suffering or you know someone who is.
Don’t wait any longer. Ask for help, please. You can always call or email me. I’ll listen.