Eating disorders don’t just affect young, white women and girls

Daybreak

(WYTV) – Hear the words “eating disorder” and you might think of a young, white female who is extremely thin — it killed Karen Carpenter. But that image is not always the case.

Child psychologists say 10% of anorexia cases and 30% of patients with binge eating disorder are males.

Men hear the culture’s message daily — be lean, be muscular, be thin.

Roughly 25% of people who struggle with eating disorders are also racial minorities.

“Unfortunately, the stereotype, again, is quite harmful in that we think eating disorders only affect young, thin girls and women. And that, I think, deters a lot of people from getting help,” said Leslie Sim, a psychologist at the Cleveland Clinic.

No matter your gender or race, eating disorders can have life-threatening complications.

If you’re a parent at all concerned that your child’s eating habits are starting to get in the way of his or her life, understand this is a very treatable condition.

For more information on eating disorders and how to get help, visit the Cleveland Clinic’s website.

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