UCL Occupational Health Service: eating disorders week
8 February 2013
Over 1.6million people in the UK are affected by eating disorders including people of all ages and backgrounds. This serious illness is characterised by an abnormal attitude towards food that cause a person to change their eating habits and behaviour and can lead to damaging results to their health. The condition can affect someone physically, psychologically and socially. The sooner a person gets help, the more likely they are to make a good recovery.
Eating disorders are often blamed on the social pressure to be thin, as young people in particular feel they should look a certain way. However, the causes are usually more complex; Biological and other influencing factors, combined with an experience can provoke the disorder.
Types of eating disorders
The most common types of disorders are:-
- Anorexia nervosa when someone tries to keep their weight as low as possible, for example by starving themselves or exercising excessively
- Bulimia when someone tries to control their weight by binge eating and then deliberately vomiting or using laxatives
- Binge eating when someone feels compelled to overeat
Where to get help
If you or you know somebody close to you who is suffering from an eating disorder go to beat support line
Your Employee Assistance Programme
UCL staff requiring support on any emotional or practical issue can contact your employee assistance programme (Username: UCL Password: employee) or email email@example.com / Freephone 0800 243 458. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 year
Elaine Fletcher, Occupational Health Service, Human Resources Division