There are more people than ever suffering from eating disorders, and in order to identify them and help them, you have to be aware of the symptoms of eating disorders. There is a shocking statistic: an estimated 5-10 million females and 1 million males are seriously afflicted by anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, and other eating disorders. If you take into account that these are only the reported numbers, and that many of the sufferers don’t seek treatment, you might see just how serious and pervasive this problem has become.

One problem is that it’s hard to catch the signs and symptoms of eating disorders, even if they are right in front of your face. Think about all the times you have said: “No thanks, I don’t feel hungry right now.” For most people, that statement is perfectly normal, and later on, you’ll want to eat when you feel better. However, that same statement could be utilized by someone with an eating disorder, at almost every possible occasion there is to eat something! Even though one isolated case might seem normal, if you happened to notice someone saying this frequently, you can start to see that something isn’t right.

Another problem in identifying the symptoms of eating disorders is that some people don’t look underweight. There are reasons for this. One reason is that they haven’t had the disorder long enough for a noticeable amount of weight loss, but if you could catch the signs that they’re harming themselves, you could nip it in the bud. Another reason is that not everyone can shed pounds easily, even if they lower their calories, and they might just be attempting to stay at the same weight, rather than get super thin. Either way, they’re hurting themselves and you could help just by noticing and trying to get them to seek a professional for treatment.

Now, as for the actual symptoms of eating disorders, if you ever notice some of these, you should definitely look into helping them out. Anyone who has anorexia might experience fatigue and fainting spells, brittle nails and hair and dry skin, irregular menstruation, irregular heart rhythms, abnormally low blood pressure, bone degeneration, and irregular bowel movements.

For bulimia, the symptoms are often a combination of both binge eating and anorexia, just at different times. In other words, they would eat a lot and then purge themselves by vomiting, laxative abuse, compulsive exercise, etc. Many bulimics are neither overweight nor underweight, so you have to look beyond their physical frame to decide if they are having trouble. If you ever notice someone who goes to the bathroom a lot, this is a sign that they might be bulimic, because they are going there to vomit or perform the logical conclusion of their laxative use. If you see them with damaged teeth or gums, fatigue, dehydration, irregular heartbeat, etc., you should try to help them.

Finally, with binge eating, someone tends to eat and eat, even after everyone else is full, and they do it consistently. Sometimes they purge, and sometimes they just eat a lot and do nothing about it. At any rate, now you know some key symptoms of eating disorders, so hopefully you can help someone in need.

Author's Bio: 

Emile Jarreau, aka, Mr. Fat Loss is fascinated by health, nutrition and weight loss. For more great info about eating disorder for losing weight and keeping it off visit