There is a common misconception that only teenage girls are affected by eating disorders, but this is certainly not the case. No matter what age you are, what gender you are and what your background is, you can be affected by eating disorders.

It is important to remember that an eating disorder is a mental health problem, and for many people who suffer from this, it can be a way of coping with stress in their lives. Countless individuals affected by eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia like the fact that they can control their food intake in a way that they possibly couldn’t in other areas of their life.

It is often difficult to tell if another person has an eating disorder as sufferers tend to be very secretive about their illness and quickly learn how to hide it from others. While it may be easier to tell if someone is suffering from anorexia because they will be losing weight, it is not so easy with bulimia as those affected tend to maintain a stable weight due to binge eating followed by purging.

Asserting Control

As mentioned above, an eating disorder is a mental health problem and one that can affect absolutely anyone, even those who appear to have it all. An example is former One Direction member Zayn Malik, who has recently revealed he struggled with a serious eating disorder while in the band.

Zayn is about to release his autobiography in which he details the illness that he says was more to do with asserting control than concern about his weight. He reveals that he was severely ill due to his eating disorder, and he would often go for three days without any food. He has blamed the stresses of living his life in the spotlight and said his eating patterns were severely affected.

Quitting

In March 2015, Zayn made the shock move to quit One Direction, much to the dismay of the bands millions of fans. In his statement, he said, “I have to do what feels right in my heart. I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight.”

In his book, he said, “When I look back at images of myself from around November 2014, I can see how ill I was. Something I’ve never talked about in public before, but which I have come to terms with since leaving the band is that I was suffering from an eating disorder. It wasn’t as though I had any concerns about my weight or anything like that; I’d just go for days – sometimes two or three days straight – without eating anything at all. It got quite serious, although at the time I didn’t recognise it for what it was.”

Anxiety

Not only did Zayn suffer from an eating disorder, but he also suffers from anxiety, which he also recently revealed. Since leaving One Direction, he has started working on a solo career, having some success, but he was forced to pull out of an upcoming gig in Dubai because of his anxiety issues. A source said he is not ‘sufficiently confident’ due to his crippling anxiety.

It would appear that the singer’s anxiety is an ongoing problem because he was also forced to pull out of another concert in London in June – this time just ninety minutes before the show was about to start. He has admitted that he is finding it hard to work by himself, despite his success.

Overcoming an Eating Disorder

Struggling with an eating disorder can be traumatic, not only for the person with the addiction but also for their loved ones, who must watch as the illness takes over. It is important that those affected get help as soon as possible because recovery is possible.

At Liberty House, we have experience in helping people struggling with various types of eating disorder including anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorders. Our expert staff have the knowledge and experience required to get to the cause of the illness and can help patients to overcome their illness through various counselling and therapy sessions.

Are You Concerned About a Loved One?

If you are worried about someone you love, then give us a call today. We know that those affected by eating disorders are often in denial about their problems and are unwilling to reach out for help. We deal with many family members who are worried about a loved one but do not know what to do for the best.

With the right help and support, you and your loved one can beat this illness; Liberty House can help. Call us today for advice and support regarding treatments for any type of eating disorder.

Source: ‘I lost so much weight I became ill’: Zayn Malik admits he developed ‘serious’ eating disorder during One Direction days in shock revelation from autobiography (Mail Online)