Eating disorders are a form of psychiatric illness whereby sufferers display unorthodox eating habits to the detriment of their physical and/or mental health. There are numerous types of eating disorders with binge eating, anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa being the most prominent.
Binge Eating Disorder - Sufferers of this eating disorder engage in periodic "binge eating sessions" which may be typified by a loss of control over what is eaten, eating until one is uncomfortably full, eating much faster than usual as well as a post-binge guilt. Negative effects of binge eating disorder may include weight gain and susceptibility to other mental health disorders.
Anorexia Nervosa - Anorexia is an eating disorder characterised by an overpowering desire to be thin, the implementation of food restriction and being underweight. Sufferers often have distorted vision of themselves whereby they perceive themselves as overweight whereas in reality they are generally well underweight. Other symptoms include an unhealthy preoccupation and/or obsession with controlling their intake of food, unusual food rituals (such as cutting food up into tiny pieces), chronic fatigue and erratic moods. Severe cases of Anorexia Nervosa can lead to chronic heart and kindey problems which may eventually lead to death.
Bulimia Nervosa - Individuals who grapple with bulimia indulge in binge eating before attempting to "purge" what they have just consumed either through the causation of vomiting or the use of laxatives. Effects may include worn-out teeth - that are damaged by acid erosion due to frequent vomiting -, damage to one's knuckles from forcing oneself to vomit as well as infertility. Bulimia is generally more difficult to detect than anorexia due to the fact that sufferers of bulimia are generally of average weight as opposed to notably underweight.