What is the link between perfectionism and eating disorders?

Alice Domar
Some 10 million females and 1 million males in the United States suffer from the eating disorders anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa. Many of them have perfectionist tendencies in terms of diet, exercise, body image, and weight. An international team of researchers led by investigators at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine has identified the top six personality/behavior traits among women with eating disorders. The six traits include obsessionality (the psychological term for a form of perfectionism) and concern over mistakes. Women with eating disorders have unrealistically high expectations in terms of weight, control over their diet, appearance, and exercise adherence. They restrict calories, binge and purge, or overexercise to reach their “perfect” weight; however, no matter how thin they get, they never feel they’ve reached their goal.
Be Happy Without Being Perfect: How to Worry Less and Enjoy Life More

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Be Happy Without Being Perfect: How to Worry Less and Enjoy Life More

Do you have trouble going to bed at night when there’s a mess in the kitchen? Do you think you would be happier if only you could lose weight, be a better parent, work smarter, reduce stress,...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.