The Deadliest Eating Disorder Out There



People are aware of eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia, but it is the more unknown disordered eating problem EDNOS that is the most deadly.

More awareness is needed so that the people who do suffer from this can receive both help and support.

Had you heard about EDNOS before?



Everyone thinks of eating disorders and the problems they can cause, but many overlook the even more deadly disordered eating. This is when your habits don’t meet the requirements of an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia. But in fact disordered eating contains the most deadly, and the majority of people haven’t even heard of it.


According to the National Association for Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders around 53% of people with disordered eating suffer from Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified, or EDNOS. The mortality rate for EDNOS is the highest of them all at 5.2% of sufferers who die from it. 

“The problem is people think that EDNOS means ‘eating disorder that’s not as bad,’” says Carolyn Costin, MFT, Executive Director of Monte Nido and Affiliates, a treatment center for eating disorders. “EDNOS is actually quite lethal, because it is underdiagnosed and undertreated,” Costin says.

EDNOS is so deadly because people who suffer from it usually exhibit an unusual combination of disordered eating issues, for example both fasting and purging. Or they have body types and BMI that mean that although their symptoms may suggest an eating disorder their bodies do not. This makes it all the more difficult to diagnose and so oftentimes people don’t receive the help they should get. 

Take a look at the signs below, and seek help if you identify with any of them—your life could depend on it.

You may have EDNOS if:

Your diet is rigid
Daily food intake is ritualistic, and your dieting rules are rigid; maybe you only allow yourself to eat after 5 p.m., or eat the same six foods everyday.

Your diet interferes with your life
You won’t go out to dinner, because you aren’t comfortable eating any of the meals on restaurant menus, or you skip out on plans to fit in a workout.

Your diet raises eyebrows
The people closest to you mention you’ve lost too much weight, say you work out too much or point out strange food habits, like avoiding specific restaurants or food groups.

Your diet is at the forefront
You spend most of the day thinking about food; what you can eat, when you can eat next, and what’s in each dish. You may spend hours researching menus and totaling up calories.

Your diet isn’t a choice
Could you change your diet behavior? Is what you eat truly a choice? If you’ve gone vegan in the name of better health, but find you actually can’t make yourself eat a cookie, you may have EDNOS. “Some people feel obligated in their brains to eat certain foods and avoid others,” Costin says. “It’s a driven, obsessive-compulsive behavior. Asking yourself if you can eat that cookie is a good strategy. I need to see that you can allow yourself to eat a certain food.”

If you notice any of these behaviors, seek help. Check out for treatment centers and eating-disorder professionals in your area, and see for more information. Also, take the pressure off labels. “Think about it as disordered eating, if that’s helpful,” says Costin. “Don’t worry about diagnosis or criteria. Just begin to talk to someone.”


Original article can be found here: – Jenna Birch – 20/11/12