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Worried about an eating disorder?

Many of us worry about our weight from time to time, and we may try losing weight by exercising or eating healthier. If someone gets preoccupied with food, by restricting food or extreme-exercising to burn calories, and it begins to impact on lifestyle and relationships, then they may have an eating disorder.

This serious disorder can cause long term health issues if it’s not addressed. It can be hard to tell if someone has an eating disorder as they may feel ashamed and hide what they’re doing.

Why do people have eating disorders?

There is no one single cause for eating disorders, and there can be various triggers. It may not even be about food, but a way of coping or taking control. Anyone can develop an eating disorder and seeking help early is important as this will give the person a better chance of returning to a healthy lifestyle. Signs and symptoms of an eating disorder can differ from person to person, although there are some commonalities. The good news is that recovery is possible. Find out more here: https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/types

Worried about yourself or someone else?

If you’re worried that your eating habits have shifted from a healthy interest in food to something more worrying, speak to a health professional, e.g. the school nurse or GP. They will take your weight and height, and ask about your eating habits. If you’re worried about someone else, speak to a trusted adult such as a teacher or parent. This link will tell you more about the signs to look for: http:www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/types/do-i-have-an-eating-disorder

More help and information

Tips around eating

  • Make sure you have three meals a day. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you’ve been restricting what you eat, start to slowly increase portion sizes.
  • While it can feel hard, try to speak to someone about your worries around food and weight.
  • Not giving your body enough fuel can cause anxiety and depression. If you notice you’re getting more irritable, anxious or low, speak to someone.
  • Don’t weigh yourself more than once a week.
  • Get your weight and height checked with a health professional. They’ll be able to work out whether you’re in your ‘healthy weight range’. You can ask your GP or school nurse about this.
  • When looking in the mirror, don’t focus on what you don’t like. Look at the bits you do like. No-one’s perfect! Give yourself compliments and smile.
  • Avoid unhelpful websites that encourage you to lose weight and stay very thin. Remember, if you or someone you know is showing signs of an eating disorder, seek help. Once eating-disordered thinking has taken hold, it can be very hard to shift, and the person will need expert help to change.

Local Support

Mental Health Matters

Mental Health Matters runs online support groups: Share Our Recovery Through Eating Disorders.

Every Sunday 5pm – 7pm on ZOOM

Coping with ED

Peer support group for those who are at more developed stages of recovery, and continue to use the support and guidance of SORTED.

Ages: 17+

Registration required – Email: sorted@mhmwales.org

Mental Health Matters

Mental Health Matters runs online support groups: Share Our Recovery Through Eating Disorders.

Every Monday 4:30pm – 6pm on ZOOM

Coping with ED

For those wanting to start their journey of recovery, this group offers support and guidance from people who have recovered.

Ages: 17+

Registration required – Email: sorted@mhmwales.org

Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)


Useful links and information


This UK eating disorder charity can help you work out if you may have an eating disorder, and offers support.

Visit Beat


Advice and information on mental health conditions, including eating disorders.

Visit YoungMinds

Recovery Record

Recovery Record is a companion for managing your journey to recovery from eating disorders, including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, obsessive eating disorder, binge eating disorder and compulsive eating disorder.

Age: 12+

Visit Recovery Road

Rise Up + Recover

Rise Up + Recover is a great app if you’re struggling with food, dieting, exercise and body image.

Age: 12+

Visit Recovery Warriors