Eating fads, experimentation and strange habits are not unusual in anyone, especially children, and usually pass without harm, but when it progresses to a detrimental change in our thinking it starts to become a mental health matter and an eating disorder.

Taking control of what we eat and when is a normal part of gaining our independence; however it can also become a way of expressing the way we feel about ourselves or our situation and of exerting some measure of control over something, when everything else around us seems beyond our control, or a way of gaining attention when we feel very unhappy.

Although we most often see an eating disorder explained as eating too little, in the form of anorexia, it could also be eating far too much,  binging and purging, or eating/drinking things that are going to harm us. When things reach this point we’re going to need some extra help to get through it and back to our usual selves.

If you or someone you know are having difficulties around eating you could talk to your GP who could refer you to someone local who can help support you through it, you could contact your local specialist team the NELFT Eating Disorder Service on 0300 555 1216 or email them at, or you could talk to someone at BEAT the eating disorder charity who have specialist teams for children, young people and adults.