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Those who have an “unhealthy obsession” with otherwise healthy eating may be suffering from “orthorexia nervosa,” a term which literally means “fixation on righteous eating.” Orthorexia starts out as an innocent attempt to eat more healthfully, but orthorexics become fixated on food quality and purity. They become consumed with what and how much to eat, and how to deal with “slip-ups.” An iron-clad will is needed to maintain this rigid eating style. Every day is a chance to eat right, be “good,” rise above others in dietary prowess, and self-punish if temptation wins (usually through stricter eating, fasts and exercise). Self-esteem becomes wrapped up in the purity of orthorexics’ diet and they sometimes feel superior to others, especially in regard to food intake.
Eventually food choices become so restrictive, in both variety and c******s, that health suffers – an ironic twist for a person so completely dedicated to healthy eating. Eventually, the obsession with healthy eating can crowd out other activities and interests, impair relationships, and become physically dangerous.




Anorexia Athletica is a constellation of disordered behaviors on the eating disorder spectrum that is distinct from Anorexia Nervosa or Bulimia Nervosa.

Although not recognized formally by the standard mental health diagnostic manuals, the term Anorexia Athletica is commonly used in mental health literature to denote a disorder characterized by excessive, obsessive exercise. Also known as Compulsive Exercising , Sports Anorexia, and Hypergymnasia, Anorexia Athletica is most commonly found in pre-professional and elite athletes, though it can exist in the general population as well.

Anorexia Athletica is more common in people who participate in sports where a small, lean body is considered advantageous. People suffering from Anorexia Athletica may engage in both excessive workouts and exercising as well as c*****e restriction. This puts them at risk for malnutrition and in younger athletes could result in endocrine and metabolic derangements such as decreased bone density or delayed menarche.

In Anorexia Athletica, self-worth is tied to physical performance and although some concern may be present about the size and shape of the body, more emphasis is placed on how lean a person is as compared to his or her successful or professional counterparts. Anorexia Athletica may occur when coaches or parents pressure athletes to improve performance and encourage an increase exercise or training or d**ting. Such behaviors may begin as voluntary but then progress to obsessive.

Symptoms of anorexia may be denied
Symptoms of Anorexia Athletica may include over-exercising, obsession with c******s, f*t, and w**ght, especially as compared to elite athletes, self-worth being determined by physical performance, and a lack of pleasure from exercising. Advanced cases of Anorexia Athletica may result in physical, psychological, and social consequences as sufferers deny that their excessive exercising patterns are a problem.

People with Anorexia Athletica may have anxiety and feel out of control in their life but that they can control their body and their w**ght. However, they will often feel guilty if they miss a workout, or don't exercise "enough," and therefore are out of control and at the mercy of this compulsory activity.



When you want the taste of food but none of the c******s, it might seem like a harmless compromise to chew it up and spit it out, but new findings show otherwise. Chewing and spitting is common among patients receiving inpatient treatment for eating disorders, and previous research has linked the practice with greater illness severity. A study published last year in Eating Behaviors confirmed those results and was the first to investigate co-occurring symptoms and personality traits. A third of the 324 inpatients studied reported that they had engaged in chewing and spitting during the eight weeks before admission to the hospital, and 21 percent did so at least once a week. When compared with patients who did not engage in this behavior or did so less than once a week, the higher-frequency group had a more troubling list of symptoms: they restricted food intake more often, exercised more excessively, had increased use of d**t pills and l***tives, and had higher levels of depression, neuroticism and body dissatisfaction.

The findings suggest that chewing and spitting could be a marker of severity for eating disorders. “It may be an ‘add-on’ behavior that is more likely to develop over time as an individual's illness becomes more severe, and the person's repertoire of disordered eating behaviors increases,” says Saniha Makhzoumi, now a predoctoral intern in clinical psychology at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford University, who co-authored the study with eating-disorder researchers at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Despite the greater pathology found among such patients, their short-term response to treatment was similar to that of other patients. The bottom line: watch out for this behavior as an indicator of worsening illness, but remember that treatment can help.



Many individuals who suffer from an eating disorder may also experience a struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). In fact, statistics have shown that nearly two-thirds of eating disorder sufferers have been previously diagnosed with another form of anxiety disorder and that 41% of eating disorder sufferers have obsessive compulsive disorder [1].

Obsessive Compulsive disorder is defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual 5th Edition (DSM-5), as “recurrent and persistent thoughts, urges, or images that are experienced as intrusive and unwanted”, and those individuals with OCD attempt “to ignore or suppress such thoughts, urges, or images or to neutralize them with some other thought or action (i.e. by performing a compulsion).” [2]

Behaviors that are obsessive-compulsive can be frequently seen in eating disorders, such as anorexia, bulimia, and b**g* eating disorder. Many of the behaviors or rituals that are characteristic of eating disorders can be considered compulsive, especially as they are often performed in an attempt to remove the anxiety or discomfort experienced. Obsessions that could lead to compulsive behaviors include thoughts related to w**ght, eating, food, or body image, such as “I need to lose w**ght”, or “I must restrict my c*****e intake”, or “I must exercise to make up for c******s consumed.” Compulsive behaviors often observed with eating disorder behaviors include:

Excessive exercise
Constantly body checking or examining appearance in mirrors
Counting c******s or c*****c intake
Frequently w**ghing oneself
Use of diuretics or laxatives to reduce w**ght
Following particular “rules” or “rituals” when eating a meal
Rigidly tracking intake of carbohydrates, sugars, fats, etc

A commonality between Eating Disorders and OCD is how levels of anxiety are reduced, which is through the mechanism of ritualistic behaviors. ..... rituals are developed to reduce the anxiety caused by a triggering obsession, such as fear of eating or w**ght gain. The cycles involved with obsessive-compulsive disorder and eating disorders are v*c***s, repetitive, and can easily begin to overlap with one another. Eating Disorders can evolve as an inherent progression of OCD, as it allows individuals to feel as though they are in control over particular triggers while experiencing the “relief” that is sought after.



(Foods high in laxative properties may be misused the same way - F&H)

Laxative abuse occurs when a person attempts to get rid of unwanted c******s, lose w**ght, “feel thin,” or “feel empty” through the repeated, frequent use of laxatives. Often, laxatives are misused following eating b**g*s, when the individual mistakenly believes that the laxatives will work to rush food and c******s through the gut and bowels before they can be absorbed. But that doesn’t really happen. Unfortunately, laxative abuse is serious and dangerous – often resulting in a variety of health complications and sometimes causing life-threatening conditions.

The belief that laxatives are effective for w**ght control is a myth. In fact, by the time laxatives act on the large intestine, most foods and c******s have already been absorbed by the small intestine. Although laxatives artificially stimulate the large intestine to empty, the “weight loss” caused by a laxative-induced bowel movement contains little actual food, fat, or c******s. Instead, laxative abuse causes the loss of water, minerals, electrolytes and indigestible fiber and wastes from the colon. This “water weight” returns as soon as the individual drinks any fluids and the body re-hydrates. If the chronic laxative abuser refuses to re-hydrate, she or he risks dehydration, which further taxes the organs and which may ultimately cause death.

Disturbance of electrolyte and mineral balances. Sodium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus are electrolytes and minerals that are present in very specific amounts necessary for proper functioning of the nerves and muscles, including those of the colon and heart. Upsetting this delicate balance can cause improper functioning of these vital organs.

Severe dehydration may cause tremors, weakness, blurry vision, fainting, kidney damage, and, in extreme cases, death. Dehydration often requires medical treatment.

Laxative dependency occurs when the colon stops reacting to usual doses of laxatives so that larger and larger amounts of laxatives may be needed to produce bowel movements.

Internal organ damage may result, including stretched or “lazy” colon, colon infection, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and, rarely, liver damage. Chronic laxative abuse may contribute to risk of colon cancer.

Overcoming laxative abuse requires working with a team of health professionals who have expertise in treating eating disorders, including a general physician, a psychiatrist, psychologist, or counselor, and a registered dietician. Support from close friends and family is also helpful. Meeting with others to talk over anxieties, concerns and difficulties can greatly aid in getting through tough times in the recovery process.


Hi @Faith-and-Hope, wow, you sure have done your homework - I had no idea so many ED, with bigger impact than I knew. I was only really familiar with Anorexia and Balima, you've opened my eyes, thanks. xox


These are the ones WH is caught in at the moment @Former-Member. I will load up BED as well, which is what he has had for many years prior to this, and it has only recently been categorised as an ed. in him it was combined with workaholism, which is now recognised as an OCD behaviour .... and he has aspects of paranoia - concerns about security, hygiene (germs, illness) and a powerful need to be controlling .... all tied up in the same confused mess.

It sounds huge, and it is, but we have found a way to make it liveable in the moment while we wait for the cycle of change to being him into the next stage - budding self-awareness of the issues ....




B**g* Eating Disorder is characterised by regular episodes of b**g* eating. Unlike BN, a person with BED will not use compensatory behaviours, such as self-induced vomiting or over-exercising after b**g* eating. Many people with B**g* Eating Disorder are overweight or obese.

The reasons for developing BED will differ from person to person. Known causes include genetic predisposition and a combination of environmental, social and cultural factors. BED can occur in people of all ages and genders, across all socioeconomic groups, and from any cultural background. Large population studies suggest that equal numbers of males and females experience BED.

Link below has been altered to comply with forum requirements .... blanked out letters will need to be replaced to access the link.**g*-eating-disorder



Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder (OSFED) was formerly recognised as Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS) in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV). According to the DSM-5, a person with OSFED may present with many of the symptoms of other eating disorders such as Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa or B**g* Eating Disorder but will not meet the full criteria for diagnosis of these disorders.

This does not mean that the person has a less serious eating disorder. OSFED is a serious mental illness that occurs in adults, adolescents and children. Around 30% of people who seek treatment for an eating disorder have OSFED.

The reasons for developing OSFED will differ from person to person; known causes include genetic predisposition and a combination of environmental, social and cultural factors.

People with OSFED commonly present with extremely disturbed eating habits, and/or a distorted body image and/or overvaluation of shape and w**ght and/or an intense fear of gaining w**gght (if underw**ght). OSFED is the most common eating disorder diagnosed for adults as well as adolescents, and affects both males and females.

The warning signs of OSFED can be physical, psychological and behavioural. It is possible for someone with OSFED to display a combination of these symptoms,


I posted the link about Carer Burden partly for you @Faith-and-Hope They rate the Carer Burden for ED as high if not higher than psychosis.

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