Disrupted eating behavior has very far-reaching effects on health and, in particular, on mental stress.
Do you measure or do you photograph your body constantly and become unduly anxious if you seem to have gained a little more weight or cents? Do you plan your meals well in advance, do you count calories all the time, or do you experience a strong guilt for delicacy?
Among other things, such thoughts and behaviors may indicate an eating disorder or disturbed eating behavior.
Nutritionist specializing in the challenges of eating, weight and body image, Doctor of Philosophy Ulla Kärkkäinen however, he says the point is not entirely straightforward: one person’s behavior similar to his tism may indicate an eating disorder, while in another there is no problem of any kind.
– What matters is how much anxiety it would cause if it were not done, he says.
The Eating Disorders Association has listed some eating behaviors signs, which are “abnormal”. According to the Association for Eating Disorders, abnormalities include:
Intentionally leaving oneself hungry with meals
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Jump over meals repeatedly
Fills your stomach with energy-free drinks
Eat only vegetables and fruits or other low-energy foods
Excessive use of artificial sweeteners, spices or salt
Exclude foods from your diet for health reasons, when in reality the reason for exclusion is the desire to lose weight
Eat only light products
Count calories or weigh foods constantly
Decides for his body when he is hungry or full
Follow a really strict diet
Feel guilty for deviating from your strict food rules
Carefully plan your meals in advance and stick to your plans
Always eat alone
Kärkkäinen says that if food dominates the mind, that is, there are constantly a lot of food-related thoughts in the mind, such as what to eat next or how many calories have been eaten by the day so far, there may be cause for concern. Also, the fact that eating is starting to restrict the rest of life can be a sign of an eating disorder.
– If you can’t even go somewhere because there’s some kind of food, it’s a really big alarm sign.
Many people with eating disorders also exercise extensively and compulsively.
Many faces of eating disorders
When talking about eating disorders, many people first come to mind as lean anorexics, when in reality the eating disorder does not show up in appearance. A person of any size can have an eating disorder.
In addition to anorexia, eating disorders include binge eating disorder, or bulimia, and gluttony, in which a person eats huge amounts either at once or continuously a lot throughout the day. In addition, there are so-called atypical eating disorders, such as orthorexia, i.e. the compulsive need to eat healthily.
I have described a disturbed eating behavior to be like a gray cloud or low pressure, which is involved in all the time
An atypical eating disorder is also considered to be ARFID, among others, where a person is unable to maintain an adequate state of nutrition at an age. He may have been a very selective eater since childhood and is suspicious and fearful of many foods. Avoidance may be related to, for example, the structure or appearance of the food. The sufferer of ARFID typically does not have a distorted body image and is not afraid of gaining weight, which distinguishes the disease from anorexia.
Statistics on how many people suffer from an eating disorder vary widely. For example, it is estimated that between 1 and 4% of European women suffer from anorexia at some point in their lives, from 1 to 2% from bulimia and from 1 to 4% from dysentery disorder.
Also read: The most common eating disorder in adults can lead to overweight or even the onset of type 2 diabetes – identify symptoms in a timely manner
However, Kärkkäinen says that eating disorders that meet diagnostic criteria are just the tip of the iceberg: very few meet all the characteristics of a particular eating disorder.
– Although clinical eating disorders are minor in the population, they should be better identified. An eating disorder significantly increases the risk of mortality. One big reason for the low incidence rates in the population is that they do not seek treatment, eating disorders are not identified, or they are overshadowed by comorbidities, which is really common.
Disrupted eating behavior can continue throughout life
Much more common than actual clear and fulfilling eating disorders is disturbed eating behavior, some of the signs of which were listed at the beginning of the story.
– It’s huge, Kärkkäinen says.
Disrupted eating behavior does not look at age or gender: anyone can have it. For some, dissatisfaction with their own body begins as early as kindergarten, and eating behavior can be disrupted even throughout life.
In this case, for example, you may constantly try to lose weight or are otherwise dissatisfied with your body from year to year.
– It’s really sad. I have described a disturbed eating behavior to be like a gray cloud or low pressure, which is involved in all the time. It pretty much affects life and, for example, how a person experiences themselves.
In his dissertation, Kärkkäinen found that disturbed eating behavior has very far-reaching effects on health and especially on mental stress in both women and men.
Kärkkäinen says that disturbed eating behavior often runs in the family.
Raja in when disturbed eating behavior becomes an eating disorder is volatile. Kärkkäinen speaks of this as a so-called “gray area”. Certain types of eating-related behaviors, such as fasting, strict dieting, or an absolutely strict and strict diet, can also go unnoticed on the side of an eating disorder.
Kärkkäinen says that he has noticed that for many people who have had disturbed eating behavior for a long time, the perception of the size of the doses is completely blurred. When looking at pictures of normal food rations with customers, very few think the rations seem low: so many are surprised at how much regular food they should eat with meals.
Body size is not about happiness
In customer work, Kärkkäinen says that he has often come across the fact that people believe that when their body is of a certain kind, they are satisfied with it themselves.
– Then when we work on the relationship between eating and the body, quite a few people realize that the size of the body is not the one that makes you feel bad. The feeling may have been much heavier in a smaller body.
For example, many look longingly at their old photographs, which are slimmer than they are now, and think that I wish I could have been happy with my appearance then. Or follow someone in a some who seems to be the actual embodiment of well-being and health, even though in reality that person’s perception of themselves can be anything but wonderful and positive.
– It seems that it is not even terribly talked about that the size and weight of the body are not always directly related to how the body feels.
Source site www.is.fi