About Eating Disorders

Eating Disorders Foundation of Canada (EDFC) grew out of a shared desire by a group of clinical experts and business leaders to enhance opportunities for recovery for individuals living with eating disorders. They knew people with eating disorders and their families struggled and they wanted to provide hope.

Eating Disorders Foundation of Canada (EDFC) looks at the available resources to support people with eating disorders and develops strategies to fill the gaps. Through funding, research and partnerships, we are creating options to provide a more responsive, comprehensive system that supports those affected by eating disorders.

An eating disorder is a serious form of mental illness that affects eating or eating-related behaviour, and an individual’s physical, psychological and psychosocial health and functioning.

They are not a lifestyle choice, a diet-gone-wrong or a cry for attention. There are many different types of eating disorders that exist, and they can affect anyone. Feeding and eating disorders include: pica, rumination disorder, avoidant restrictive food intake disorder, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, other specified feeding oreating disorders and unspecified feeding or eating disorders.

Three of the more common eating disorders are:

Binge Eating Disorder

Symptoms include:

  • Eats larger amounts than normal
  • Lack of control over eating
  • Feels embarrassed and may eat alone
  • Feelings of disgust or guilt
  • Marked distress
  • At least x 1/week for 3 months

Bulimia Nervosa

Symptoms include:

  • Eats larger amount than normal
  • Lack of control over eating
  • Recurrent inappropriate compensatory behaviour to prevent weight gain (e.g. self-induced vomiting, misuse of laxatives, diuretics, diet pills, fasting or excessive exercising)
  • Self-evaluation unduly influenced by body shape and weight
  • At least x1/week for 3 months

Anorexia Nervosa

Symptoms include:

  • Food restriction leading to low body weight
  • Intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat
  • Self-evaluation unduly influenced by body shape and weight
  • Restricting Type: primarily dieting, fasting, excessive exercise x 3 months
  • Binge Eating/Purging Type: recurrent binge eating, vomiting, use of laxatives, diuretics or diet pills at least for 3 months

Full recovery from an eating disorder is possible through detection and intervention. By educating ourselves, we can begin to end the stigma and ensure the proper supports are there for those who need them.