Ten Things About Eating Disorders You May Not Know
As with other psychiatric diagnoses, misinformation and stigma persists around eating disorders.
These eye-opening facts do not convey the difficulties individuals with ED symptoms experience, but can dispel falsehoods about the diagnoses and facilitate understanding.
- Alcohol and substance problems are four times greater in people with eating disorders than in the general population.
- In every decade since 1930, there has been an increase in the incidence of anorexia in women aged 15 to 19.
- About 7 percent of the adult population in the U.S. has symptoms of an eating disorder. To give this some perspective, about 9.9 percent of the same population has type 2 diabetes.
- Eating disorders are not adolescent diseases. One research study found that in the past five years, 13 percent of women over 50 had symptoms of an eating disorder – 70 percent indicated symptoms are owed to attempting weight loss.
- Eating disorders are not a white female problem. In the U.S., the incidence of eating disorders is similar in Hispanic, non-Hispanic White, Asian American and African American populations.
- The NIH states that eating disorders are six times more prevalent than Alzheimer’s disease. However, for each $88 spent on Alzheimer researcher, only $0.93 is spent researching eating disorders.
- Studies indicate the incidence of new eating disorder cases has been on the rise since 1950.
- From 1988 to 1993, the rate of bulimia tripled in women aged 10 to 39.
- Of all psychiatric illnesses, the highest mortality rate belongs to eating disorders.
- It is likely an increasing number of men will experience symptoms of an eating disorder.
Source: Food and Nutrition
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