It may be hard to understand eat disorders when you hear about someone forcing themselves to throw up or not wanting to eat any food. Maybe that person is very stressed out, does not like how they look, or will not be satisfied until they are super skinny. Whatever the reason is, if you have an eating disorder, it is important to seek help right away before you experience the negative side effects your body can go through physically and mentally.
Having an eating disorder can mean doing extreme diets, food bingeing, throwing up, or obsessively counting calories. This can all come from having a distorted view in the way that you look at yourself, at food, or your weight. A doctor can tell you that you are at a healthy weight but you may see how supermodels look and wish you looked just like them with a flat stomach and no curves. Maybe having an eating disorder does not have anything to do with the way you see yourself but can be dealing with feelings from the past that have not been resolved and you are using food as a way to cope. If you restrict food, you may feel like you finally have control over something when you live in an environment where you have no control. You can overeat so that you can make yourself feel better from the sadness, anger, and self-loathing.
One type of eating disorder is anorexia where you starve yourself to avoid being fat but you never feel thin enough. You will use any method to be skinny whether it is over-exercising, diet pills, or purging. Bulimia is when you have out of control binge eating moments and then you purge away the extra calories as well as using laxatives to make yourself sick. Binge eating disorder is when you consume thousands of calories in a short period of time. This is a behavior that you cannot control by yourself or you feel you cannot stop eating even though you feel full.
While you may not be able to control your eating disorder by yourself, it does not mean that there is no treatment for it. The first step to treating any problem that you have is to admit that you have a problem. Do not wait until you hit rock bottom to get help like developing bone loss, heart disease, or malnutrition from lack of nutrients or lack of calorie energy. Open up your problem to someone you trust like your best friend, a relative, a school counselor, your doctor, or your therapist. You should also make sure it is someone who will not judge you or reject you for a disease that you are working to treat.
Tell that person that you have something important to say and you would like that person to be patient and hear you out. Then start explaining what triggers your behaviors, feelings, and thoughts and the impact it has had on you. That person may be experiencing a range of emotions like sadness, anger, shock, helplessness, or confused. Be patient and give that person time to adjust. Give suggestions to your friend how they can help you if they do not know what to do like checking in with you and helping you find treatment.
There are many methods of treatment such as finding a support group so that you are free to share, give advice, and offer support to those just like you going through the same thing. You can also go to individualized or group therapy to explore your issues leading to your eating disorder, improve your self-esteem, and find healthy ways to deal with your feelings. A nutritionist or a dietician can teach you how to incorporate healthy eating habits into your life. There are residential treatment centers for 24/7 care and monitoring.
If you ever feel stressed, sad, upset, lonely, or bored, read a good book, going to the movies, write in a journal, go for a walk, or volunteer your time to help someone in need. Change your drastic eating rules that do not cause you to sacrifice something that you want. For example, you can say that you will eat junk food like fast food or sweets once in a while but not all of the time. Make rules that you will incorporate healthy foods like fruits and vegetables into every meal as well as eat when you are hungry and stop when you are full. Make sure to eat every three hours and not to skip any meals.
If you are having body image issues, it is time for you to start liking yourself so that you no longer destroy your body. You should make a list of all of the great things that you like about yourself as well as what others have said about you. Also write about your talents, skills, achievements, and negative qualities that you do not have. If you experience any negative thoughts, challenge them by asking what evidence those thoughts have to what they are saying. Sometimes our thoughts can play tricks on us and we need to learn to ignore them. Get rid of fashion magazines that tell you how you should look as we all come in different shapes and sizes. Eating disorders are very serious so it is important to love your body and love yourself.
Located in Tacoma, Washington, Bayview Center’s mission is to offer clinically-driven programs and services to treat a number of substance abuse disorders along with anxiety and depression using cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, trauma therapy, yoga therapy, and more for a successful recovery. For more information, please call us 888 570 7154 at as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.