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Defining Eating Disorder

Eating disorder is a compulsion to eat, or avoid eating negatively affecting both one's physical and mental health. Eating disorder is marked by extremes. It is present when someone experiences severe disturbances in eating behavior, such as extreme reduction of food intake or extreme overeating, or feelings of extreme distress or concern about body weight or shape.

A person with an eating disorder may have started out just eating smaller or larger amounts of food than usual, but at some point, the urge to eat less or more sprirals beyond the control. The two main types of eating disorders are anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.

There is a third type of eating disorder currently being investigated and defined - Binge Eating Disorder. This is a chronic condition that occurs when an individual consumes huge amounts of food during a brief period of time and feels totally out of control and unable to stop his/her eating. Eating disorder can lead to serious health conditions such as morbid obesity, diabetes, depression, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, kidney failure, which can even lead to death.