If you have an eating disorder you know that if you are in the middle of a binge or purge or running on the treadmill, you are not going to answer the phone. However, researchers continue to attempt to quanitfy prevalence of eating disorders, in this case, by phone.
The researchers conducted a phone survey of 1,500 urban women, most of them nonsmokers and university graduates. The average age was 31.
None of the women was classified as anorexic, and only 1 percent met the criteria for bulimia (bingeing and purging). However, almost 14 percent reported binge eating one to seven times per month, while nearly 3 percent occasionally used vomiting, laxatives, or diuretics for weight control. About 28 percent said they exercised intensively twice a month solely to lose weight.
Over at the Philadephia Inquirer in the Personal Health section is a note, "Bingeing, purging found to be common among young women."
Universite de Montreal did a recent survey for these results. While these numbers may not be valid, continued surveys like this may be helpful in keeping eating disorder awareness up.
Letting eating disorders fall into a category of "normal" or "beauty control" is a danger that we need to prevent. Continual awareness of the prevalence and pain of these disorders is
a crucial part of encouraging recovery.