Risk Factors for Eating disorders


About risk factors: Risk factors for Eating disorders are factors that do not seem to be a direct cause of the disease, but seem to be associated in some way. Having a risk factor for Eating disorders makes the chances of getting a condition higher but does not always lead to Eating disorders. Also, the absence of any risk factors or having a protective factor does not necessarily guard you against getting Eating disorders. For general information and a list of risk factors, see the risk center.

Risk factor list: The list of risk factors mentioned for Eating disorders in various sources includes:

Risk factors discussion: Most people with eating disorders share certain personality traits: low self-esteem, feelings of helplessness, and a fear of becoming fat. In anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorder, eating behaviors seem to develop as a way of handling stress. 1

Eating disorders appear to run in families, with female relatives most often affected. However, there is growing evidence that a girl's immediate social environment, including her family and friends, can emphasize the importance of thinness and weight control. For example, regular discussion of weight and dieting may normalize societal pressure to be thin. Weight related teasing by peers and family is related to low body esteem and eating disturbances in young girls. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) reports that girls who live in families that tend to be strict and place strong emphasis on physical attractiveness and weight control are at an increased risk for inappropriate eating behaviors.1

1. excerpt from Fact Sheet Eating Disorders: NWHIC

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