Eating Disorders Affect All Ages

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Eating Disorder

In conjunction with National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, February 26 through March 4, Arkansas Children's Hospital urges families to watch for signs of an eating disorder. This year the theme for the annual observation is "Be comfortable in your genes," emphasizing that a person's size and shape are genetic and poor eating habits can severely damage their health.

Millions of Americans are reading food labels these days; some are trying to eat healthier while others hope to avoid being overweight. Our society's obsession with weight stems from a number of factors; the growing number of obese Americans, images of celebrities who are unrealistically thin and the millions of people who fall in between those categories and suffer from a poor self-image or lack of self-esteem. While our attention on obesity can be helpful, the concern over body image also can get out of control, sometimes leading to unhealthy eating disorders that can be life-threatening.