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What is an eating disorder?

We all need food to survive and therefore eating plays an important part in our lives. The relationship we have with food may differ from time to time due to a variety of different factors. However, if you have an eating disorder your relationship with food is likely to be more complex, which can have a big impact on your physical and emotional health. In fact, it is often underlying feelings, not food, that is the starting point of an eating disorder.


Research shows that there is no single cause for eating disorders. The development of an eating disorders can be very complex and personal to an individual. Some of the factors that can make someone more vulnerable to developing an eating disorder are:

  • Peer pressure

  • Experiences dating back to childhood

  • Lack of confidence in yourself

  • Bereavement

  • Family problems

  • Other life-changing events

How do you know it’s an eating disorder?

If you have an eating disorder, you’ve probably become preoccupied with both your weight and your food. You may have also noticed changes in your weight and mood.


  • Not allowing yourself to eat the right amount of food needed to stay at a healthy weight
  • Weighing much less than you should
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Feel like eating is the same as losing control
  • A high or sense of achievement if you don’t eat and/or over-exercising.
  • Like you can’t think about anything other than food


  • Eating large amounts of food and then later intentionally making yourself sick because of feelings of shame and guilt
  • Being dehydrated which causes bad skin
  • Going from being overweight to underweight quite often
  • Feel that you hate your body and believe you are fat
  • Feeling ashamed and guilty every time you eat
  • Feeling like you’re constantly stuck in a cycle of being out of control and trying to get control back

 Binge Eating Disorder

  • Feeling like you cannot stop yourself from eating
  • Putting on weight
  • Health problems associated with putting on weight

We can help you manage your emotions

All eating disorders can develop in to major health problems, whether these result from eating too much or too little. You might be worried about your own eating or friends, family and people around you might have become worried about you. If you are reading this then the chances are that you or someone close to you needs help. If you think you may have an eating disorder then it is important to try and talk to someone quickly as eating disorders tend to become more serious over time. Off the Record can offer the right help and support to help you along the journey to recovery. The best way to get in touch is to give us a ring

Download our eating disorder information sheet here

Call us

Saturday Support 020 8175 6776

Open on Saturdays from 10am-1pm

Croydon Service 020 8251 0251

Merton Service 020 3984 4004

Sutton Service 020 8680 8899

Email us

General enquiries info@talkofftherecord.org