What is an eating disorder and where does it come

Alice Mancilla , Op-Ed editor

A lot of people are aware of eating disorders, but don’t know what they really are and where they originate from. The term “eating disorder” is an umbrella word for a whole spectrum of a person’s behavior relating to food and eating. Psychiatry.org states, “Eating disorders are behavioral conditions characterized by severe and persistent disturbance in eating behaviors and associated distressing thoughts and emotions.” 

Great, but where do they come from? According to verywellmind.com it states, “Mental health risk factors can include anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and trauma such as childhood sexual abuse. Social stressors, such as peer pressure and bullying, may also be involved.” Anxiety is a very big factor that contributes to eating disorders, as well as low self-esteem and depression. An article from nedc.com states, “Eating disorders are serious, complex and potentially life-threatening mental illnesses.” Notice how it says that eating disorders are “serious” and potentially “life-threatening.” This shows that they’re  something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Eating disorders are not just about food, it can most definitely be about past trauma, which could include bullying. According to nationaleatingdisorders.org, “Bullying can lead to low self esteem, social isolation, poor body image, and also has been shown to directly contribute to the development of eating disorders.” This just proves that bullying is a big contributing factor towards developing an eating disorder. But bullying is a whole other story. The point is that all people have their own past trauma and all people get a nasty comment about their outside appearance once in a while. Most eating disorders develop during teen and young adult years. There are many different types of eating disorders. The reality of it, is that eating disorders can not only make you anorexic, but they can make you overweight as well. Therefore eating disorders can be a lot of different things, but it’s important for students to be respectful of other students when it comes to this topic.