Middle-Aged Women and Eating Disorders

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Anorexia by alexjessicarichmond from Flickr

The stereotype for someone with an eating disorder is a young teen female, but it appears that women aged 30-50 are also at risk.

The groups are not as different as you might suspect:

Dr. Pryor tracked patients at the Eating Disorder Center of Denver (EDC-D) over the course of two years, comparing the information of 78 younger women with that of 63 women in their 30s, 40s, and 50s. While she initially believed that the specific issues facing these women would vary depending on their age, she found that these women had similar temperaments and triggers, regardless of age. Both age groups scored similarly on tests of character, with low self-esteem and high anxiety predominating. Additionally, young and middle-aged women were affected by many of the same triggers for disordered eating, including dieting, experiencing abuse, and grieving.

Part of me thinks like that older women aren’t just developing these eating disorders. We had them all along and never got treatment when we were teens. The other part of me sees that disordered eating is becoming all more common and is now spreading to all age ranges.


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