What is Disordered Eating?

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What is Disordered Eating?

This is the first of our series on how to move from disordered eating to intuitive eating. So the first question is “what is disordered eating?”

Disordered eating is abnormal or disrupted eating patterns that a person might engage in because they’re concerned about their looks or are attempting to manage their weight, but they don’t meet the clinical criteria for a full-blown eating disorder.

This is actually quite common in our culture that is obsessed with food, weight, size, and shape.

Disordered eating refers to a wide range of abnormal eating behaviors that can include: constant dieting, restriction of certain foods, obsessive calorie counting, eating in secret, rigid and inflexible rules around food and eating, skipping meals, and “saving up” calories throughout the day for dinner or a big night out.

According to the National Eating Disorder Association, 65% of women ages 25-45 engage in some kind of disordered eating. That’s the stat we have, though we know it’s also older adults, males, and children.

In this series, we will explore the slippery slope of disordered eating fueled by societal messages, how disordered eating differs from a clinical eating disorder, and how one can eat intuitively and have a normal relationship with food and their body.

Watch other videos in this Psych in 60 series to learn more about disordered eating and leave your questions in the comments below!

Click here for more content by Juliet Kuehnle, MS, NCC, LPC!

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