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Important information about drunkorexia and other eating disorders

CHECKLIST FOR VISIBLE CHARACTERISTICS OF ANOREXIA Behavioral Signs  ____Signs of restricted eating (usually low intake of food) such as severe diets or fasting ...


Behavioral Signs

 ____Signs of restricted eating (usually low intake of food) such as severe diets or fasting

____Odd food rituals counting bites of food, cutting food into tiny pieces, or preparing

         food for others while refusing to eat

____Intense fear of becoming fat, regardless of  weight

____Fear of food and situations where food may be present

____Rigid exercise regimens

____Dressing in layers to hide weight loss


____Use of laxatives, enemas, or diuretics to get rid of food, over-exercising

Physiological Signs

 ____Weight loss (often in a short period of time)


____Complaints of feeling cold

____Dizziness and fainting spells

____Loss of menstruation without physiological cause

Attitudinal Signs

 ____Mood shifts

____Perfectionistic attitude

____Insecurities about performance and capabilities

____Feelings of self-worth are increasingly linked to what is or is not eaten

____Withdrawal from people

____Cognitive Rigidity

____Difficulty adapting/flexing


Behavioral Signs


____Secretive eating, evidenced by missing food

____Preoccupation with and constant talk about food and/or weight

____The avoidance of restaurants, planned meals, or social events if food is present

____Self-disparagement when too much has been eaten

____Bathroom visits after meals

____Vomiting, laxative abuse or fasting

____The use of diet pills

____Rigid and harsh exercise regimes

____Fear of being fat, regardless of weight


Physiological Signs

 ____Swollen glands, puffiness in the cheeks, or broken blood vessels under the eyes

____Complaints of sore throat

____Unexplained tooth decay

____Frequent weight fluctuations, often within a 10-15 pound range

Attitudinal Signs

 ____Frequent and intense mood shifts that include depression, sadness, guilt, and self-hate

____Severe self-criticism

____The need for approval to feel good about self

____Self-worth determined by weight

____Self-worth focused on how one looks instead of what one does/accomplishes or feels



Behavioral Signs


____Restriction of activities because of embarrassment about weight

____Going from one diet to the next

____Eating little in public while maintaining a high weight

Physiological Signs

 ____Weight-related hypertension of fatigue

____Weight gain

Attitudinal Signs

 ____Feelings about self based on weight and control of eating

____Fantasizing about being a better person when thin

____Feeling tormented by eating habits

____Social and professional failures attributed to weight

____  Weight is the focus of life


A Person With Anorexia…

  • Is thin and continues to get thinner
  • Diets even though not overweight
  • Has a distorted body image – feels fat even when thin
  • Loses or experiences thinning hair
  • Talks excessively about food, cooking, or dieting

 A Person With Bulimia…

  • Engages in binge eating
  • Uses the bathroom frequently after meals
  • Reacts to stress by overeating
  • Experiences frequent fluctuations in weight
  • Has depressive moods

A Person With A Binge Eating Disorder…

  • Eats large amounts of food when not physically hungry
  • Eats rapidly
  • Eats to the point of feeling uncomfortably full
  • Often eats alone because of shame or embarrassment
  • Has a history of marked weight fluctuations



  • Examine your own beliefs and behavior related to body image and weight and consider how your children might interpret the message they get from you
  • Encourage healthy eating and exercise
  • Allow your child to determine when he/she is full
  • Talk about the variety of different body types and the fact that they can all be acceptable and healthy
  • Discuss the danger of dieting
  • Tell your child you love him/her for what is inside, not because of how he/she looks



  •  Label foods as “good” or “bad”
  •  Use food for rewards or punishments
  •  Diet or encourage your child to diet
  •  Comment on weight or body types: yours, your child’s or any one else’s
  •  Allow teasing or making fun of anyone based on physical characteristics including size

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