Eating disorder symptoms - is food ruling my life?

Although eating disorders can be defined in many different ways, there are certain typical behaviours and thought patterns which indicate food may have too much control over our lives. Some of the following eating disorder symptoms may ring bells for you, or for people you know:

  • Obsessive thinking about food
  • Anxiety about eating in social situations
  • Rigid calorie counting
  • Meticulously preparing food for other people, then refusing to eat with them
  • Buying food from different shops so the assistants don't notice how much you're eating
  • Buying dieting magazines and books which promise to solve all your problems
  • Narrowing your social life so you don't have to eat in front of other people
  • Making yourself sick or using laxatives
  • Refusing to eat in unfamiliar environments
  • Severe mood swings and physical weakness brought on by lack of nourishment
  • Exhibiting perfectionist behaviour to show people how well your life is under control
  • Distorted perceptions of other people's lives (“she's got slimmer thighs than me so she must be happy - I hate her”)
  • Feeling trapped by the hold that food has over you
  • Thinking that there's no point in taking charge of your life “until I lose all this weight”
  • Lying to your family and friends about how much you eat
  • Fearing that no one will ever love you because of your size.

For further information call 0800 081 0700