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Eating Disorders – articles and other resources

Eating disorders are about much more than food, weight, or the way that you look. They’re an attempt to feel better. Learn more about what’s really behind the problem and what you do to overcome it.

Woman Eating Small Meal

If you have an eating disorder, you may believe that being thin is the key to being happy, or that if you can control what you eat, you’ll be able to control your life. But the truth is that happiness, confidence, and self-empowerment come from accepting yourself for who you truly are—and that’s only possible with recovery.

Overcoming an eating disorder involves rediscovering who you are beyond your eating habits, weight, and body image. It also involves learning to recognize and deal with your emotions in healthy ways, rather than using food—whether by obsessing about it, avoiding it, or overeating—as a substitute.

What are eating disorders?

Eating disorders involve extreme behaviors, feelings, and attitudes about weight and food. But while the symptoms revolve around eating, they are more about coping with feelings than they are about food. Restricting food may be used as a way to feel more in control or to manage anger, insecurity, and anxiety. Purging may be used to relieve guilt and deal with the fear of weight gain. And overeating may be used to soothe depression or ease tension and stress. The most common eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder. While more common in women, men also suffer from eating disorders. Eating disorders usually start during the teen or early adult years, but they are also seen in older adults as well as children.

Featured articles

Eating Disorder Treatment and Recovery: The voice of your eating disorder tells you you’ll never be good enough. But with treatment, support, and smart self-help strategies, you can overcome your eating disorder and gain true self-confidence. MORE »

Anorexia Nervosa: Learn to recognize the signs of anorexia, identify the need it’s filling in your life, and find healthier ways to feel in control and cope with negative emotions. There’s help available when you’re ready to make a change. MORE »

Helping Someone with an Eating Disorder: You can’t force a person with an eating disorder to change, but your encouragement and support can make a positive difference. Learn more about how to best support the one you love. MORE »

Topic articles

Types of eating disorders

Eating disorder treatment and self-help

Related topics

Anxiety

Anxiety may be one of the issues fueling your eating disorder—especially if you use your control of food to gain a sense of control over your life or to reduce tension. But there are healthier ways to manage your uncomfortable feelings. MORE »

Depression

Are you struggling with feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, or self-loathing? Depression and eating disorders often go hand in hand. But you can feel better. Learn more about effective treatments and self-help strategies. MORE »