The American Psychiatric Association says warning signs include:
- an intense fear of gaining weight,
- strange behaviors or rituals at meals, and
- a distorted body image.
The two main types of eating disorders are bulimia, in which large of amounts of food are eaten then intentionally vomited, and anorexia nervosa, in which food is limited to lose weight.The association says that while males can have eating disorders, most of the 5 million victims in the United States are females.
If you think your teen has a problem, talk to your family doctor right away. The association says psychotherapy is essential to help anyone with eating disorders.