The Epidemic of Disordered Eating: Implications for the Diagnosis, Treatment, and Treatment of Children with Eating Disorders
“The prevalence of disordered eating could be even higher if children were asked about binge-eating or muscle-building symptoms and included studies during the pandemic,” said Dr. Jason Nagata, assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of California San Francisco. Nagata was not involved in the research.
“As of the end of the study, they haven’t reached pre-pandemic baseline levels, so we are likely to feel the impact of this increase in volume for quite some time,” Hartman-Munick said.
In regards to the need for treatment and professional help for both eating disorders, Rollin said via email.
It is important to know what to look for. People of all races, genders, ages and body sizes can be affected by these disorders.
There is a stereotype that girls are more prone to developing eating disorders. In boys, eating disorders can be associated with excessive exercise and being muscular, sometimes with a focus on muscle-building supplements. These cases are often not reported or treated.
Disordered eating can also look like narrowing the groups of foods a person is willing to eat, feeling anxiety or shame if food rules are broken, the number on the scale impacting their mood or eating behaviors, limiting social events, or bringing foods that follow their rules to events to control their eating, Rollin added.
“Other red flags include if an individual engages in fasting, significant caloric restriction, vomiting or using laxatives or diet pills to lose weight,” he said.
A meta-analysis of disordered eating: A public health issue that often goes underreported and underrecognized in children and adolescents
The study highlights a serious public health issue that often goes underreported and underrecognized, according to the meta-analysis published Monday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.
The study was limited in its ability to portray the full scope due to the fact that it relied on data in which kids and adolescents self-reported their behavior, said the study author.
Lpez-Gil said researchers need to look into what’s causing the eating behaviors. But in the meantime, experts hope that institutions and families will focus on identifying and helping kids who are showing signs of disordered eating.
Those kinds of behaviors are dangerous and can cause serious medical problems to the organs such as the heart and brain.
It is possible that the findings will help health professionals, education and parents understand the magnitude of the problem.
Those behaviors could include an obsession with body weight or shape, distorted self-image, rigid dietary rules, binge eating and purging behaviors, he added.
“Eating disorders and disordered eating can both take away and limit someone’s quality of life as they both fill your brain with thoughts about food and your body,” Rollin said, adding that the behaviors often keep you from other things you value in your life. You deserve a full life and not one that is consumed with food, exercise and weight.