Eating disorder or overreacting?

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Aine

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#1
Hi, I'm new here, trying to figure out some stuff. Sorry if this becomes long winded. Someone close to me is worried that I have an eating disorder. I don't think I have and want to put her mind at ease but I don't know how. I guess I better just give a rough overview of her worries, see what you think...

I have certain food allergies (diagnosed) which have contributed to a strained relationship with food, and I do to some extent shy away from social situations involving food because of this as I don't want the attention of always having to inform about my allergies.

I have since I was a child been a fairly picky eater, and also eaten rather small portions. But not to lose weight, I was always a skinny child and I knew it. I was told often enough.

I got injured a couple of years ago, which led to me putting on weight that I am trying to lose now (yes I do see the irony). So I recognize that I will exhibit some behaviour that can be associated with ED, as I am dieting at the moment (restricting calorie intake, watching what I eat and monitoring weight). I'm not even good at it as I slip up with snacks from time to time.

She doesn't like that I jog because she thinks it's an ED thing, but while burning calories does come into it to some extent, I mainly jog to keep fit and to control my asthma better (less asthma attacks when I am in shape).

I do have a history of abuse and trauma that she knows about and I think that makes her extra worried.

I feel kind of lost as I can see her points but I don't think in my case that it's ED... Thoughts?
 
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Mary26

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#2
Obviously, no one here can diagnose you but if you would like an opinion,
you would really have to provide more information. What do mean by having a strained relationship with food? When you say you restrict, do you mean you eat very little? Do you get dizzy or not feel well? Are you hungry a lot of the time? How often do you jog and for how long? How often do you think about your weight and food? Do you weigh yourself? Do you look at yourself in the mirror a lot? These are just some basic questions that might give us a better sense of whether this is a diet or you could be heading down a dangerous path. And as for your past, some people do use restriction as a form of self harm but only you know if those are the thoughts you associate with hunger.
 
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Aine

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#3
Hi, thanks for taking the time to reply.

Of course I know no one here can diagnose. If I wanted a diagnosis I would see professionals, but I'm not the one thinking I need to and don't want to waste their time. And I am not underweight. I have been in the past, but as I said I have been overweight and have now dropped to normal bmi but still in the upper region of normal. I would appreciate your opinions though.

It's kind of difficult to explain, but I have always found social eating a pain. I was always called out for eating little and nagged about eating more growing up (I automatically steered away from food that I had adverse reaction to and I never complained about the reactions, so allergies weren't discovered by my family but diagnosed when I addressed it at the doctor's in my teens and got tested). So I guess I feel conscious of possibly being watched and judged by what and how much I eat. (Which ironically this person has unintentionally reinforced. I care very much about her and her opinions though so I want to put her at ease). I don't generally enjoy meals, or cooking, and if I am occupied I can easily forget to eat and not feel hungry until hours later.

I don't restrict the way I associate with Anorexia, and I don't do fasting. I do try to keep between 1000 and 1200 right now as I need to drop a bit more, a bit higher if I am more physically active. I don't think I'm that hungry much, it's more that I'm not very full and I sometimes get a craving for sweets and snacks.

I jog about 5 k at the time, but how often varies from once a day twice a week to one or two times a day up to 5 days a week.

Since I am trying to lose weight of course I think about my weight a lot. I don't feel comfortable at this weight or in my clothes now. And I do weigh myself to keep track.

Thanks again, I appreciate your opinions.
 
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megirl

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#4
:welcome: sorry I have been meaning to reply to you,
I dont know a lot about eating disorders, I always believe (this is only my opinion through my own experience) that if you are questioning whether you may have an issue re your eating then it may be good to talk to a health professional about your and/or other peoples concerns
Is your diet affecting other parts of your life,spending time with others
Do keep posting and I am sure others will reply to your post
 
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Mary26

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#5
Hi, thanks for taking the time to reply.

Of course I know no one here can diagnose. If I wanted a diagnosis I would see professionals, but I'm not the one thinking I need to and don't want to waste their time. And I am not underweight. I have been in the past, but as I said I have been overweight and have now dropped to normal bmi but still in the upper region of normal. I would appreciate your opinions though.

It's kind of difficult to explain, but I have always found social eating a pain. I was always called out for eating little and nagged about eating more growing up (I automatically steered away from food that I had adverse reaction to and I never complained about the reactions, so allergies weren't discovered by my family but diagnosed when I addressed it at the doctor's in my teens and got tested). So I guess I feel conscious of possibly being watched and judged by what and how much I eat. (Which ironically this person has unintentionally reinforced. I care very much about her and her opinions though so I want to put her at ease). I don't generally enjoy meals, or cooking, and if I am occupied I can easily forget to eat and not feel hungry until hours later.

I don't restrict the way I associate with Anorexia, and I don't do fasting. I do try to keep between 1000 and 1200 right now as I need to drop a bit more, a bit higher if I am more physically active. I don't think I'm that hungry much, it's more that I'm not very full and I sometimes get a craving for sweets and snacks.

I jog about 5 k at the time, but how often varies from once a day twice a week to one or two times a day up to 5 days a week.

Since I am trying to lose weight of course I think about my weight a lot. I don't feel comfortable at this weight or in my clothes now. And I do weigh myself to keep track.

Thanks again, I appreciate your opinions.
I wish I could give you a definitive opinion but I really can't. I can tell you that there are people with anorexia who eat more than you do. I was one of them. It might be helpful to observe your thoughts and see how much of your time and energy is spent on your weight , body and food. But you have to be willing to be honest about it, which is really hard if you actually do have an eating disorder...
 
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Aine

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#6
Thanks anyway.

Seems I'm stuck... I don't think it's ED but whenever I say that I am just told that denial is a symptom of ED. I even tried reading up on the different diagnosis but don't think any of them fit me. I feel like I am in control but I don't want to change my habits just now as I still need to lose some weight.

I don't feel right going to health professionals with this as it feels weird raising a "problem" that I don't think I have, and I think they might just stare at me and ask why I came.

I guess I was just expecting sort of the same here, a "well doesn't sound like an issue then"...

I mean, I know I have issues with food but at what point does that constitute an ED? I figure as long as I am aware and in control it's not such a huge problem?
 
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Mary26

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#7
No, it wouldn't make sense to seek help if you feel you don't need it. So just see how it goes. The only thing I would mention is that 1200 calories is considered (by the medical community) the bare bone minimum for dieting (no matter how much a person needs to lose) Anything less than that can be dangerous. And if your hair starts thinning or you stop menstruating or you feel cold or dizzy, then your body is pretty much telling you you've taken it too far. But hopefully you'll be fine. I wish you joy!
 
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megirl

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#8
The main thing is that if you trying to lose weight and restricting calories, that you really need to ensure you are eating foods which are high in nutritional value.
I guess there's many people out there that do have issues food,and do not have an ED.
What I would recommend because you are restricting calories to such a minimum that you see a dietician
Your gp should be able to refer you to one. I think it would be useful to be seen by a dietician especially as you also have some food allergies
When you see the gp be good for you to get some bloodtests to make sure your dieting isn't affecting your physical health
Take care