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Do I have an eating disorder?

by nina on October 24, 2010

do i have an eating disorderAs someone who suffered for many years with various forms of an eating disorder, I often asked myself this question – “do I have an eating disorder” or am I just extremely health conscious, a perfectionist, possibly slightly depressed and overly conscious about food and weight.

There is sometimes a very fine line between an eating disorder and a healthy person that is simply concerned about their weight and what they eat. But anyone who has suffered with an eating disorder knows the difference.

An eating disorder is essentially a self diagnosed illness. While there are thousands of tests and criteria available both online and offline, only the sufferer can truly diagnose themselves.

As someone who has suffered with a multitude of eating disorders, I also understand the denial that is a part of the illness. It is almost as if the disorder does not want you to admit that you have it, or if you do, that you are in control of it and can let it go once you get to “x” weight.

Eating disorders can mask themselves as “healthy eating” – where a person is obsessed with only eating healthy, low calorie, low carbohydrate or low fat food. These so called healthy diet plans are extremely restrictive and often actually unhealthy.

The most insidious part of the eating disorder is the mental obsession that it creates. There becomes extreme focus on what to eat, when to eat, weight issues, rigorous planning of meals and often the inability to achieve the perfect eating plan, which creates further self punishment and obsession.

Do I have an eating disorder?

Are you stuck in a cycle where all your thoughts and actions are consumed with food, weight, diets and exercise? The mental obsession can be the first clue. Only the sufferer can know this, as no one else is in their head.

The most important thing to consider is – Does Food Dominate My Life?

Do I have an eating disorder – Questions to ask yourself

There are thousands of detailed questions that different eating disorder groups, therapists and treatment centers may use to diagnose an eating disorder. What is important, however, is that you get honest with yourself.

Review the questions below, think about how they relate to your life and try to honestly identify whether you do in fact have an eating disorder that is possible making your life miserable. Sometimes identifying the problem is half the battle!

  • Have my thoughts about food/weight prevented me from participating in activities?
  • Have my thoughts and behavior with food affected my work?
  • Have my thoughts and behavior with food affected my relationships?
  • Do I lie about how much/how little I am eating?
  • Do I eat in secret?
  • Do I not attend social functions because I am worried about food?
  • How much time do you spend each day thinking about food, eating, preparing food and researching diets?
  • How much time do you spend each day thinking about losing weight?
  • Do I have an enormous fear of gaining weight?
  • Have you used starvation, laxatives, diet pills, purging or extreme exercise to control/lose weight?
  • Do you think that your thoughts/behavior with food is getting in the way of you living your life?
  • Do you ever wish that you were more normal around food and weight issues?
  • Does Food Dominate Your Life?

Do I have an eating disorder and what can I do about it?

If you have honestly identified that you suffer with an eating disorder, this is a great first step. The next step is looking clearly at eating disorder and the harm that it has caused.

If you are ready to get help, you can get more information about getting help for eating disorder or visit the contact form and submit your details to receive information about the release of the “Freedom From Eating Disorders” ebook.

Nina Vucetic

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