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Common Types of Eating Disorders

Nancy MacGregor MA, ATR-BC, LPC, ACS, Clinical Director

Food is one of a few things every person on earth needs to survive. Whether you’re young or old, rich or poor, male or female, you need to eat to continue living. However, for people who suffer from an eating disorder, food represents a major stumbling block in their life. By learning about the common types of eating disorders and speaking with a therapist in Washington Township, NJ, and the greater South Jersey area, you can determine if you suffer from one of them. Then, you can begin taking steps to get the therapy you need. If you suffer from an eating disorder, therapy is available at Harmony Bay.


While there are several types of eating disorders that include undereating or overeating, the most common types of eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorders. Each of these can lead to complications in the form of severe physical health conditions, including malnourishment or morbid obesity.


Anorexia nervosa is one of the most common types of eating disorders. Medical experts characterize this disorder by noting excessive weight loss and deliberate self-starvation. If you suffer from anorexia nervosa, you may:

  • Restrict your food intake, leading to significantly low body weight
  • Avoid gaining weight by exercising and fasting
  • Fear becoming fat
  • Have a distorted view of your body shape or weight

This disorder can lead to depression, a higher risk of suicide, and stomach problems. Additionally, you can have severely low blood pressure, a weakened heart, and possible heart failure. Therefore, it’s essential to get therapy as soon as possible, before symptoms become more severe and lead to further health complications. Addressing the underlying mental health issues that cause this condition is key to resolving the physical presentations.


Another of the common types of eating disorders is bulimia nervosa. If you struggle with this disorder, you frequently binge eat, and then you try to counteract that binge by making yourself throw up, using laxatives, or using other methods to purge the large intake of food. Most people who are suffering from bulimia practice this cycle at least once a week. Though they may be in the average body weight range, they have a flawed view of their body, just like a person who suffers from anorexia, and believe that getting thin will lead to improved self-esteem.

This disorder can lead to tears in your esophagus, bleeding from your gastrointestinal system, and chronic dehydration. Seeking psychiatric counseling before symptoms get too severe is very important in avoiding permanent health issues.


Binge eating disorder is essentially what it sounds like: a person eats an excessive amount but doesn’t take any measures to counteract the disproportionate amount of food. The person may not realize that they’re doing this, as some binge eaters report feeling a loss of control around food. They do, however, generally feel distressed or disgusted by their behavior, and, as a result, may decide to eat alone. This can happen during periods of increased stress or can morph into a constant behavior. This eating disorder can lead to drastic weight gain and obesity, high cholesterol, and heart or gallbladder disease.


If you suffer from any of the common types of eating disorders, you don’t have to feel ashamed. More likely than not, there are perfectly reasonable explanations for how you feel, and understanding those reasons will help you overcome your behavioral tendencies. Admitting that you have a problem and need help is the first step on the path to recovery from an eating disorder. At Harmony Bay, we offer various types of therapy for eating disorders, as well as a variety of other mental disorders, including:

Getting therapy for one of the common types of eating disorders can save your life. If you’re suffering from an eating disorder and seeking a therapist in Washington Township, NJ to help you overcome your struggles, look no further than Harmony Bay Wellness. To learn more, call [Direct] today. 


Treatment with Harmony Bay

Harmony Bay is an outpatient behavioral health service that offers primary mental health treatment for a variety of mental health disorders. Our mission is to make mental health care convenient and affordable while providing an unmatched experience to our clients. contact us today by calling 855.765.6399.