Self-Denial, Secrecy and Deliberate Lying in Eating Disorders

I don’t know how many times I’ve said, “I’ve already eaten, thanks,” “No thanks, I’m going be eating later,” or “I’d love to, but I’ve got a stomach ache,” when I actually hadn’t eaten, wasn’t going to eat later, and didn’t have a stomach ache. Why did I do that? Did I realize I had, or was developing, an eating disorder? How long did it take for that realization to click? And once it did, did I stop lying to avoid eating with others or did I do it more?

A lot of questions spring up when you start thinking about secrecy, denial, and lying as it related to eating disorders. And answering these questions by having to remember what you thought when you first began to show signs of your eating disorder is hard. It is hard for many reasons, but one reason is that the we feel about … Continue reading →

EDs Don’t Discriminate: Psychiatric Comorbidity in Men with Eating Disorders

Eating disorders don’t discriminate, they just have a bias (more on this in the future). While the majority of eating disorder patients are females, males suffer from eating disorders as well. In fact, it is about, roughly, a 10:1 ratio.

Men tend to just keep quiet about it (and who can blame them, given the stigma women face, it only gets worse for the men.) But, on the inside, their experiences, thoughts, behaviours and recovery span the same spectrum.

There’s relatively little research out there on men with eating disorders, in large part due to the low prevalence rates which makes it harder to get a large enough sample size. So, you have to get creative, as the authors of this study did: they reviewed the prevalence of eating disorders and comorbid psychiatric disorders using data from the Veterans Affairs medical centers of male patients in the fiscal year … Continue reading →

Eating Disorders and Psychiatric Comorbidities in Female Inpatients

Patients with eating disorders commonly exhibit comorbid psychiatric disorders, including anxiety, depression and OCD. The presence of comorbid disorders has been shown to exacerbate the severity and chronicity of the disorder, and unfavourably affect treatment outcome. Moreover, comorbid disorders may necessitate specialized treatment plans that take into account all the co-occuring disorders. Recovery from an eating disorder is hard enough, but when it is complicated by depression and severe anxiety, it can be a lot harder.

Nonetheless, commonly co-occuring psychiatric disorders may also provide researchers and clinicians clues about the etiology of eating disorders, the underlying neuronal processes as well as possible pharmacological interventions.

Researchers have been identifying disorders that commonly co-occur with eating disorders and studying the differences in co-morbidity between disorders. I picked one to write about today, it is a study by Blinder and colleagues that came out in 2007. It is by no means … Continue reading →