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Weight Checks and Eating Disorders

Everyone checks their body to some extent, but many people with eating disorders repeatedly check their body and often in a way that's unusual.

Sometimes body and weight checking becomes second nature and many individuals with eating disorders don't even realize they're doing it," said Dena Cabrera, PsyD, psychologist at Remuda Programs for Eating and Anxiety Disorders. "Commonly, they check to feel for fatness, bones and any physical change in their body to subconsciously or consciously motivate their eating disorder behavior."

Many individuals with eating disorders weigh themselves at frequent intervals, sometimes many times a day. As a result they become obsessed with the daily weight fluctuations that are a normal part of the body and would otherwise pass unnoticed. The movements on the scale then determine their mood and eating patterns.

Remuda Ranch believes there's a need to assess the time spent on body/weight checking behavior as well as the consequences to determine if there needs to be a change in behavior. Most of the time body/weight checking needs to be stopped in an effort to uncover other influential factors that may trigger eating disorder behaviors, such as emotional regulation issues, trauma and maturity fears.