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Eating Disorder Warning Signs

Stressors like COVID-19, changes to daily routine, The Holidays, and major life transitions can trigger urges to step back into old behaviors, including Eating Disorder behaviors, as a way to cope with difficult emotions and maintain a semblance of control in a chaotic world.



Many will struggle under-the-radar. Make sure you are familiar with the warning signs below, and both seek help /urges others to seek help if needed.


  • Sudden weight loss or weight gain

  • Taking small bites / tearing food into small pieces

  • Preference to eat food in a certain order or in a certain way

  • Refusal to eat before or after certain times

  • Inflexible food choices

  • Preference for food of similar texture or color

  • Slowly eliminating food groups or categories from diet

  • Sudden increase in exercise

  • Sudden interest in fad dieting or "healthy eating"

  • Frequent bathroom use after meals

  • Loss of interest in social activities & hobbies

  • Increased mood irritability & emotional reactivity

  • Expresses fear of weight gain

  • Over-values body weight, shape and appearance

  • Frequent weighing and measuring body parts

  • Obsesses in mirror about certain aspects of body

  • Eating large amounts of food in short periods of time

  • Complains of guilt, disgust, sadness after eating

  • Requests frequent reassurance that they are not "fat"

  • Hair loss or thinning

  • Frequent complaints of stomach pain

  • Difficulty regulating body temperature



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© 2020 by Rachel Dore, Psy.D, CEDS