Do You Have Anorexia Nervosa? Know the Warning Signs

Anorexia nervosa is such a serious condition that you'd think people would know if they're suffering from it. Surprisingly though, most people with this eating disorder, particularly in the early stages, don't even realize that they have a problem.
People may realize they have issues with food or weight gain, but the problem usually comes on gradually. It becomes your norm; you may never think things are that bad.
Here are some symptoms of anorexia that are huge red flags. If you have any of these symptoms, you should talk to your health care provider or a counselor.

Your Weight

If you are considered underweight, that could be a red flag that you have anorexia. You might want to talk to a doctor.

Don't go by weight alone, however. Some people are naturally underweight without having anorexia. Some people who have anorexia are average weight, or may even be obese. Consider other symptoms before you decide you don't have a problem.

Obsession

One of the first signs of anorexia is an obsession with anything weight-related. You may feel you have to measure and consider every calorie carefully, and to restrict yourself from eating at times. You may be obsessed with the number on the scale or your body measurements, and feel passionately driven to decrease them. Dieting, exercise, and other weight-loss issues, consume your thoughts and may even get in the way of other things, like your responsibilities or your social life.

Physical Signs

Losing weight excessively and quickly is a common sign of anorexia, but it's not the only physical sign. You may also notice you often feel fatigued, weak, or dizzy. You may find yourself ignoring hunger pangs.

You may get colder easier or experience hair loss. Your doctor may notice your blood pressure is low, or lab work may (but not always) begin to show nutritional deficiencies.

Women may notice that their menstrual cycle is erratic or that their periods are getting lighter.

Mood

Anorexia can affect your emotional state. Partly this is because you're depriving yourself of food, and your body isn't happy about it, so you feel physically horrible. All those physical symptoms mentioned above can put you in a bad mood.

Another part of this is the emotional stress due to the fear, anxiety, and depression that come with eating disorders. Concern about gaining weight, stress overeating, worrying about people finding out about your disorder—all of these can indicate that you're not just on a diet or a health kick; you have a problem.

Sources: Healthline, Eating Recovery Center, Rosewood Ranch

Photo: Pixabay

More Articles

Anorexia nervosa is a dangerous type of eating disorder characterized by an intense fear of weight gain, extremely restrictive eating habits, and...

The first rule of eating disorders is not to talk about eating disorders—at least, that's what your eating disorder will tell you.

Many...

It may sound unbelievable, but people can suffer from a severe eating disorder and not even know it. You would think just looking in a mirror...

As the discussion around eating disorders becomes less and less taboo, a growing number of high-profile celebrities have begun to talk about their...

It is hard for someone without an eating disorder to understand why someone suffering from anorexia nervosa would go without food. Most people...

More Articles

More Articles

Anorexia nervosa is a dangerous type of eating disorder characterized by an intense fear of weight gain, extremely restrictive eating habits, and...

The first rule of eating disorders is not to talk about eating disorders—at least, that's what your eating disorder will tell you.

Many...

It may sound unbelievable, but people can suffer from a severe eating disorder and not even know it. You would think just looking in a mirror...

As the discussion around eating disorders becomes less and less taboo, a growing number of high-profile celebrities have begun to talk about their...

It is hard for someone without an eating disorder to understand why someone suffering from anorexia nervosa would go without food. Most people...

What causes someone to develop an eating disorder? Unfortunately, there’s no easy way to answer this question. Stress, emotional trauma, cultural...

Bulimia nervosa is a type of eating disorder characterized by recurrent binging and purging, a destructive cycle that often leaves bulimic...

Laxative abuse is a common practice among people struggling with eating disorders that involve purging, such as bulimia nervosa or anorexia...

Most people find holidays stressful, but the thought of facing holidays can be overwhelming for a person with an eating disorder. If a special day...

Even though most people have some awareness of bulimia, it’s important to remember that the signs and symptoms will often manifest themselves...

Susan Dey first rose to fame in her role as a charming, innocent looking girl named Laurie Partridge on ‘The Partridge Family’, a television...

Eating disorders often do more than just affect a person’s body weight. In extreme cases, disordered eating habits can cause severe malnutrition,...

Your metabolism is the many different chemical reactions that your body undergoes to sustain your life. One of the main functions of the...

When you start treatment for an eating disorder, one of the essential goals is to learn how to make good food choices. There are two common...

Eating disorders are the most deadly of all psychological disorders. Ginging, purging, and starving oneself can have multiple effects on the body...