Eating Disorders

Eating Disorders 2018-06-08T18:47:47+00:00

Help For You

Food related eating disorders range from anorexia and binge eating, to bulimia.

Do you have a preoccupation with your body weight or with food? These are often the first and most common signs of an eating disorder however; the actual cause for such conditions goes far beyond the obvious. Individuals with eating disorders often use food and the control of food as a way to manage their feelings and emotions. Dieting, bingeing, and purging may begin as a way to cope with painful emotions and to feel in control of your life, but ultimately, these behaviors grow into obsessions and have serious physical and emotional consequences.

Eating disorders are complex conditions related to any combination of emotional, social or family issues. Rebecca Ginder can help you identify the underlying cause of your eating disorder and lead you down a road to recovery. If you are struggling with an eating disorder, get help right away. The longer an eating disorder goes untreated, the harder it is to overcome. With treatment, you can feel better and stay at a healthy weight and best of all, gain control of your life.

Help For Someone You Love

Suffering from an eating disorder is both emotionally and physically destructive for the individual. Often they feel isolated, alone and hopeless as they move through their life burdened with deep feelings of shame and guilt. An eating disorder can be confusing and misunderstood by loved ones leaving them uncertain about what to do and how to be supportive. Grief, loss, trauma and depression can leave your loved one no escape from the eating disorder because it is the only coping skill they have to move through life.

Early identification and treatment of eating disorders can reduce the likelihood of a chronic and potentially life-threatening condition; however, treating an eating disorder isn’t just about getting someone to eat normally. The most effective treatments involve psychotherapy or counseling, individualized medical and nutritional attention, and assessment and treatment for any co-occurring substance addiction or abuse.

If left untreated, eating disorders can become chronic, debilitating, and even life threatening. Rebecca Ginder helps patients and their families better understand eating disorders so that the patient can begin recovery and the family understands the importance of their support. The first step is to seek treatment.

For recovery to occur, treatment must address the mind, body, feelings and emotions, the family wellness and support and the individual’s sense of purpose. Contact Rebecca Ginder today to learn more about how we can help.

To truly understand eating disorders, you need to be aware of the three different types:

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia is both a dangerous and life-threatening eating disorder involving self-starvation. People with anorexia have an intense fear of gaining weight. It involves severely limiting the amount of food and extreme weight loss of 15 percent or more below the person’s “ideal” weight; however, despite physical emaciation, those suffering from Anorexia have a distorted body image and will convince themselves that they are overweight.

Signs of Anorexia:

  • Refusal to accept and maintain minimally normal body weight
  • Intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat
  • Disturbance in the way in which one’s body weight or shape is experienced
  • Denies the seriousness of low body weight
  • Change in menstrual cycle

Dangers:

  • Heart and kidney failure
  • Muscle loss
  • Death

Bulimia Nervosa

Individuals suffering from bulimia nervosa routinely “binge,” consuming large amounts of food in a very short period of time and then immediately self-inducing vomiting (or “purging”) to rid their bodies of the just-eaten food. They may also use large quantities of laxatives or even resort to enemas to empty their stomachs after bingeing. Since the large quantities of food they eat are rarely fully digested, people struggling with bulimia are usually of an average weight.

Signs to watch for:

  • Recurring episodes of binge eating accompanied by a sense of loss of control over eating
  • Excessively acts to prevent weight gain
  • Preoccupation with body shape and weight

Dangers:
There are many life-threatening complications brought about by Bulimia. More serious complications include the following:

  • Esophagus or gastric inflammation or rupture and dehydration
  • Electrolyte imbalances that can result in heart failure and death
  • Irreversible heart, kidney and dental damage

Binge Eating

Binge eating involves recurring and out-of-control episodes of consuming large amounts of food in short time periods, generally long after hunger has subsided and well beyond being comfortably full. Binge eating may also involve feelings of loss of control or eating in secret.

Signs to watch for:

  • Eating large amounts of food in short time periods
  • Eating well beyond fullness
  • Eating in secret
  • Hiding food
  • Excessive weight gain

Dangers:

  • Obesity
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Diabetes
  • Other weight-related health issues

Studies have increasingly linked eating disorders with substance abuse conditions. Specifically, Anorexia and Bulimia demonstrate a greater likelihood than the general population to also be affected by drug addiction or alcohol addiction. Many people struggling with Bulimia also struggle with conditions such as depression, addiction and dangerous impulsive or self-destructive behaviors.

Factors than can contribute to eating disorders include the following:

  • Low self image/poor self esteem
  • History of physical, sexual or emotional abuse
  • Depression or other emotional conditions
  • Feelings of loss of control
  • Family or relationship problems
  • Culturally reinforced norms valuing physical appearance or certain body sizes
  • History of being teased or ridiculed because of appearance

Rebecca Ginder - Delray Beach Addiction Counselor