Thyroid problems are common in people with eating disorders – especially in those with anorexia nervosa.
People with eating disorders are at risk for hypothyroidism. In these cases, however, reduced thyroid function may be an adaptation to malnutrition and, therefore, some experts think that only the eating disorder should be treated, not hypothyroidism.
It may also be difficult to distinguish between hypothyroidism and other symptoms of eating disorders. For example these symptoms for hypothyroidism are also common signs for eating disorders:
- Increased awareness of the cold
- Cold hands and feet
- Low mood and depression
- Slow movements and thoughts and mistakes
- General Tiredness
As with many other health conditions caused by eating disorders, thyroid problems can be treated while someone is still struggling with an active eating disorder, but it is much more effective to begin treatment once a patient is in recovery.