The public health significance of disordered eating behavior is great. These are relatively common disorders, affecting primarily women;overall at least 2.5% of the population is affected.(1,2) Rates of less severe but still disordered eating among teens and college students are higher still. Population-based studies show that 7% of adolescent females and 3% of adolescent boys report using unhealthy weight control behaviors, such as purging or skipping meals, to manage their weight."""""""" The economic and social burdens of eating disorders are substantial.(8,9) Medical complications are extremely common and the rate of mortality is very high. In fact, well-designed studies have found a mortality rate in anorexia nervosa of over one half percent per year(10,11) and recent evidence documents elevated mortality in other eating disorders as well.(12) Moreover, disordered eating may be important to our understanding of the causes, prevention, and treatment of obesity. For example, patterns of binge eating and night eating in obese individuals have been recognized for over 50 years(13) The phenomenon of binge eating has been a topic of increased interest and controversy over the last 15-20 years. In summary, disordered eating has a high prevalence rate, significant medical and psychosocial co-morbidities, and important implications for treating and preventing obesity. For these reasons, a Disordered Eating Behavior Core is a valuable component of the center.

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National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
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