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Eating Disorders

  • By: Gina Wong-Wylie
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

According to the National Eating Disorder Information Center, eating disorders primarily affect women of childbearing age, with an estimated 5–7 percent of this population experiencing an eating disorder. While the research findings are inconclusive, an estimated 1–9 percent of pregnant women develop an eating disorder. Disordered eating during childbearing years is not an area widely researched, and knowledge about the relationship between eating disorders and conception, pregnancy, and postpartum is limited.

Eating Disorders in General

It is roughly estimated that 3 percent of women will experience an eating disorder in their lifetime. Females between the ages of 15–64 are at risk for developing an eating disorder, with an even greater probability for younger women. The most recent Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders outlines definitions of ...

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