Help a Friend or Family with an Eating Disorder

Woman with Eating DisorderEating too much or eating too little may become causes of concern for you if you notice a family member or a friend with such symptoms. Contrary to popular perception, eating disorders pose a big threat to many people today.

When you notice a friend or family member eat too much or too little regularly, instead of brushing them aside, or speaking before thinking, you can first observe to see if they suffer from an eating disorder.

Serious Disorders

Eating disorders can immensely affect a person’s health, which makes them far from trivial conditions. These conditions also go beyond just food, weight, image, and self-control. Eating disorders stem from deep psychological and emotional stress that simply happens to manifest through eating behavior.

Common Disorders

Anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorder make up the three most common eating disorders in the country. Anorexic people tend to starve themselves out through diet, diet pills, exercise, or purging. Bulimic individuals binge eat and purge themselves in a destructive cycle.

Finally, people with binge eating disorder overeat uncontrollably.

Observe for Symptoms

Symptoms you can watch out for that indicate any of the three disorders above include dieting through diet pills, skipping many meals, and other obsessive practices. Binge eating symptoms include hoarding food, nonstop snacking, or secret eating.

Watch out for purging through self-induced vomiting, taking laxatives, intense exercise, or frequent fasting.

Offer Support

You can watch out for the symptoms above and help your family or friend accordingly. You can help by providing support without judgement or criticism. You can reinforce your offer if you face denial. The essential thing is for your family or friend to know you are there for them.

Find Treatment

Now, when your family or friend is ready and open for your help, you can help him or her choose the appropriate treatment. Bulimia, binge eating disorder, and anorexia nervosa treatment come in different programs, such as the ones provided by

With your support, your family or friend can overcome his or her eating disorder.