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What is a body image disturbance?

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Eating disorder is not solely an issue with women. Many men engage in disordered eating when experiencing body image dissatisfaction. Disordered eating behaviors can include skipping meals, crash dieting, fasting for short or long periods of time, bingeing, and purging. The physical, mental, and psychological effects of disordered eating vary depending upon the duration and severity of the negative eating pattern.

Anyone can develop disordered eating. Some people have a higher risk for developing disordered eating, including:

  • People who are in occupations, in living situations, or who participate in activities where there is a focus on appearance (escorts and sex workers are in this category).
  • People who are depressed
  • People who have a relative with an eating disorder
  • People who come from dysfunctional families
  • Survivors of sexual abuse
  • Children of alcoholic parents
  • Survivors of sexual assult
  • People who have other compulsive behaviors
  • Women
  • High-achievers
  • Athletes

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