Eating disorders are marked by a disturbance in eating behavior that puts an individual at risk. Anorexia nervosa is characterized by a refusal to maintain a minimum body weight necessary for good health. It is marked by an intense fear of gaining weight or getting fat, as well as a distorted view of one’s body. There is also a denial of the low body weight. Bulimia nervosa is characterized by binge eating in which large quantities of food are consumed over a discrete period of time (within any two-hour period). There is a feeling of lack of control over eating, followed by a purging of the food consumed through vomiting, use of laxatives, diuretics, enemas, or other extreme means.
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