If people suspect that they may have developed anorexia, they can use the signs of anorexia to determine if they have the eating disorder. There are common signs and symptoms of anorexia that can indicate whether or not there is a problem.
If the person is preoccupied with their food consumption including the number of calories, fat content, and portion sizes of their meals, it may be a problem. Someone could argue that even dieters think about these things. However, people with anorexia tend to have an extreme obsession with food consumption.
People with anorexia may have ritualistic behaviors related to eating like chewing a specific number of times or only eating things a certain way or in a particular order. A person with anorexia may spend their time reading diet books or searching for recipes with the lowest fat or calorie content that they can find.
When looking in a mirror, a person with anorexia often sees fat even if they are emaciated. This distorted perception of their bodies is a telltale sign of anorexia. If someone without anorexia is dieting, they will still see a generally accurate self-image while looking in the mirror.
How can someone know if their body image is distorted? If someone who thinks they might have anorexia looks at someone else who wears the same clothing size as themselves, they should expect to see that they are relatively the same size. If the person thinks they are much larger than the person who wears the same size of clothing, it can be a sign of a distorted body image.
Someone thinking they might have anorexia can judge how much of their thoughts and time are devoted to food, losing weight, and exercise. Can the person go about their daily activities and free time without thinking about food or weight loss related topics?
If the person believes that they may have a problem with anorexia, they should consult their doctor. Weight loss is typically seen as a positive thing, but the person should realize that the dramatic weight loss associated with anorexia can cause serious health problem and can even be fatal. Therefore, it is important for the person to seek professional medical attention.