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University of Illinois Springfield

Counseling Center University of Illinois Springfield

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Eating Disorders

students with arms up on beachIn a weight conscious society, some people strive to reach an unrealistic body image, as promoted by the media and fashion industry. Eating disorders have also become a growing concern on college campuses. Sometimes the steps that people take to lose weight, when taken to extremes, can cause serious health concerns and can even be fatal. If you think that you or someone you know has an eating disorder, please stop by the Counseling Center for help.

Eating disorders are serious illnesses, not lifestyle choices. In fact, anorexia has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. In a national survey, four out of ten people reported that they either suffered or have known someone who has suffered from an eating disorder.

If you think your friend may have an eating disorder, visit Teens Health for tips on how to help your friend get help.

The Something Fishy Website on Eating Disorders has articles explaining anorexia, bulimia, compulsive eating, “non specific” eating disorders and binge eating.

Have you heard of “Pica”? No, it’s not a typing font – at least, not in this instance. “Pica” is the craving for non-food items, like paint chips, plastic, baking soda, or ice.

Prader-Willi Syndrome is a disorder that starts at birth and is the result of a defect in the hypothalamus. The person is insatiable and never feels full.

Do you often skip breakfast, not really starting to eat until noon and continue eating until bed, at which time you have trouble falling and staying asleep? You could have Night Eating Syndrome!

The Something Fishy website also has articles on the physical dangers of eating disorders, cultural factors that contribute, how to help loved ones who have this problem and links to books you can order on the subject.

Read about the “Myths and Realities” of eating disorders, how the process of recovery works and where to go to get help. A “Survivor’s Wall” with comments and supportive messages from real people who have survived and conquered their eating disorders are on the Eating Disorders Mirror Mirror website.

To maintain a healthy lifestyle, check out the National Heart, Blood & Lung Institute for on-line tools, such as, a bmi calculator,

 

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