Eating Disorders

A whole range of issues may be behind the eating disordered choices of an individual. Eating disorders may begin as a way to smoke screen other concerns and may be a symptom of thoughts, behaviors, and feelings over which the person does not feel control. These other concerns may be the catalysts for restricting caloric intake or for binge-purge cycles. Either of these can result in serious health problems and even death. Red flags for use in the early identification of eating disorders are as follows.

Anorexia Nervosa

  • Loss of menstrual period
  • Dieting with relish when not overweight
  • Claiming to feel "fat" when not overweight
  • Distorted body image
  • Preoccupation with food, calories, nutrition and/or cooking
  • Denial of hunger
  • Excessive exercising, being overly active
  • Frequent weighing
  • Refusal to maintain weight expected for age and height
  • Intense fear of gaining weight or being fat
  • Strange food-related behaviors
  • Complaints of feeling bloated or nauseated when eating normal amounts of food
  • Intermittent episodes of "binge-eating"

Bulimia Nervosa

  • Excessive concern about weight
  • Strict dieting followed by eating binges
  • Frequent overeating, especially when distressed
  • Bingeing on high calorie, sweet food
  • Expressing guilt or shame about eating
  • Use of laxatives, over-exercising, enemas, diuretics, fasting and/or vomiting to control weight
  • Leaving for the bathroom after meals (secretive vomiting)
  • Being secretive about binges and vomiting
  • Planning binges or opportunities to binge
  • Feeling out of control
  • Depressive moods

Help is available. Call the University Counseling Center at 279-4347.

National Eating Disorders Association
Eating Disorder Referral and Information Service
National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders
Anorexia Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders
Food Addicts Anonymous
Phone: 561-967-3871
National Center for Overcoming Overeating
Phone: 212-875-0442
Overeaters Anonymous General Service Office
Phone: 505-891-2664; Fax: 505-891-4320

Contact Us

Counseling Center


Location: McInteer room 313