EATING DISORDERS

Eating Disorders have the highest mortality rate of any psychiatric illness and is the leading cause of death for women between 17 and 24 years of age. Current estimates predict that 10 per cent of individuals suffering from anorexia will die within 10 years of its onset. In addition, seventy-five per cent of women will be affected by an eating disorder at some point in their lives.

Recent statistics from the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders says 80 per cent of 10-year- olds are afraid of being fat, and 42 per cent of girls in Grades 1 to 3 want to be thinner. Further research shows 95 per cent of those with eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25. Although it’s difficult to put an exact figure on the amount of people affected by eating disorders in Canada, current numbers vary from 150,000 to more than 600,000.

These numbers are alarming and they continue to grow. Despite the high number of adolescents, young adults, women and men affected by eating disorders, the treatment options are limited and capacity insufficient to address the urgent needs of this community. .Wait times vary throughout the country, but some wait times can take anywhere from eight months to five years for an inpatient bed. As a result, many patients go untreated or under-treated, adversely affecting quality of life and health outcomes.

For more information about eating disorders, we suggest the following resources: