According to the Eating Disorders Coalition, roughly 30 million Americans have an eating disorder. However, while common conditions like anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa may be well known to all of us, there are a number of other eating disorders and food related behavioral problems that are rarely discussed or mentioned, but can be every bit as dangerous to those who have them.
Read on to discover the eating disorders that are actually more common than you might think.
1. Avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder
According to Shena Jaramillo, a registered dietician nutritionist who specializes in eating disorders, avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) affects up to 3 percent of the population. This disorder is characterized by quite extremely picky eating or harmful eating patterns—or actually a combination of the two—patients dealing with ARFID “may have challenges with food textures, smell, or colors” or have a general lack of appetite, Jaramillo says.
The condition is common among younger children and is even more common in males. ARFID can cause serious health issues, including unhealthy weight loss, nutritional deficiencies, and an avoidance of social situations where food is present.