An eating disorder is a very complex illness to treat and it is well documented that early intervention is paramount to a person’s recovery.

Whilst there are diagnostic criteria for both Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa (see mental health link below) there may be times that the symptoms of each illness cross over and a person shows the characteristics of both illnesses.

Because there are no specific diagnostic criteria for this illness when someone displays signs and symptoms of both anorexia and bulimia it is grouped into a sub group called Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS).

SEED have produced documents to explain this fully and information re-identifying signs and symptoms. Referring to the leaflets identification checklist we list different signs and symptoms for both Anorexia and Bulimia. There is a common theme with all eating disorders and that is it is linked closely with low self esteem and low self worth. People will evaluate themselves through body weight and shape and this then becomes a control issue.

If someone is matching 3 or more areas within the signs of Bulimia or signs of Anorexia pages, there may be cause for concerns and we would recommend that they speak to someone: a family member, a school teacher, a work colleague, family or friends. Without any doubt the individual should engage with their GP in order to make sure they keep safe and a referral is put in place for the mental health services.

If you are living in Hull and have a Hull GP, or live in East Riding and have a Hull GP, you are able to benefit from services provided by EVOLVE Hull Eating Disorder Day Service via the GP or self refer via the Single Point of Access via (01482) 671560.

  • Change in behaviours and an overall sadness
  • Depression may set in very quickly due to low nutrition. It may be necessary to seek medical support for the depression
  • Anti social and withdrawing from normal activities, family and friends
  • Uncharacteristic outbursts and mood swings and irrational thought patterns
  • Obsessional around food and food issues
  • The inability to concentrate
  • Pre-occupation with recipes and an over whelming desire to cook and bake for others
  • Control as to where the food is eaten, at what time, and where the food is prepared
  • Scrutinising food packets for fat content, calories and carbohydrate values
  • High Anxiety levels around meals times
  • Food rituals, such as food not touching on the plate, numbers e.g. (equated to the number of carrots, potatoes or other vegetables)
  • Body checking and excessive weighing

Pregnancy and Eating Disorders

SEED aim to help and support pregnant women with an eating disorder deal with the excitement and changes that are about to happen to them, both emotionally and physically.

Please see the resources available to download below.

Within the Jobcentre there is a team of Disability Employment Advisors. This is a team of Disability Specialist’s that are working to improve the Customer journey for individuals with health barriers. If you are having difficulty in accessing the services at the Jobcentre or feel unable to speak openly regarding your health with your Work Coach the Disability Employment Advisor’s can advocate on your behalf.

Please speak with SEED should you require our support and they will forward on your concerns and details.

Eating Disorders are extremely complex and no one size fits all. They do not discriminate against age or gender. Likewise they do not care about ethnicity or sexuality. However an Eating Disorder would be an added burden for anyone who is already struggling to identify with their sexuality and possibly their appearance.

All of the above factors could make it extremely difficult for anyone to open up to their families or partner and seek the assistance they desperately need, which would also have a massive impact on their mental health and general well being.

SEED are here to provide a non-judgemental advice service and sign post anyone suffering with an Eating Disorder to the best route to aid and assist in their road to recovery.

Seed’s resident Psychotherapist, Leighah, is the manager of a Facebook group with the aim of supporting people with eating disorders and negative body image.

Here you can find services that Leighah personally offers though email, Skype or in person. These services range from nutrition advice; to body image coaching; to counselling.

To find out more about these services, you can find them on her Facebook page: Leighah Beadle-Darcy/Physis Arts and Therapies Services.

Leighah also has her own website, Physis Arts and Therapies, where you can read her blog post and contact her.

You can also watch Leighah’s video about Body Image on her secondary Facebook group, Authentic Body, Beautifully You – ABBY.

Self Harm, also known as self injury, doesn’t mean that someone necessarily wants to attempt suicide. Self harm is a coping mechanism for emotional issues that person has. Self harm is physically harming yourself.

Self harm tends to be very hard for the people who care about you to understand and is likely to cause them great distress.

More information about Self Harm

Body image is the way you see yourself and how you imagine you look.

Having a positive body image means that, most of the time, you see yourself accurately, you feel comfortable in your body, and you feel good about the way you look. It is common to struggle with body image, no matter who you are. Severe negative body image can lead to serious eating and exercise disorders.

From PlannedParenthood.org.

“You gain weight, but it’s more important to realize that you also gain life.”

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