Although the majority of our students at Adult & Teen Challenge USA seek help for drug and alcohol recovery, our programs welcome anyone who is looking to change their lifestyle, including people with eating disorders. Through our Christ-centered programs, we give students the tools to overcome self-destructive habits and become physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy, as well as spiritually empowered.
What are Eating Disorders?
Eating disorders are extreme attitudes and behaviors toward weight and eating that have serious mental, emotional, and physical effects on an individual. Although eating disorders are commonly associated with young women, they can affect men and women of all ages.
The three most common eating disorders that we encounter are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorders. With anorexia nervosa, an individual has an unrealistic, negative body-image, obsesses over weight, and goes long periods of time without eating. Although individuals may reach dangerously thin body weights, they may still believe that they are overweight.
Like anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa is also caused by a negative body image and fear of gaining weight. Instead of not eating, an individual with bulimia will binge and purge, eating large quantities of food and vomiting later.
Unlike bulimia and anorexia, an individual with a binge-eating disorder will eat large quantities of food with no effort to control weight gain. Oftentimes, people with binge-eating disorders will know their eating habits are out of control and will feel powerless, unable to control how much they eat.
What Causes Eating Disorders?
The cause of eating disorders is generally psychological. Oftentimes, individuals with an eating disorder will suffer from low self-esteem and a negative body image. A negative body image can stem from a variety of factors including unrealistic societal standards of beauty, childhood trauma, and playing a sport with rigid weight standards, such as ballet, cheerleading, or wrestling. To beat an eating disorder, you must cultivate a positive self-image so you feel happy and content with your own body.
How Can Our Program Help?
We work with students to overcome self-destructive behaviors and change their lifestyle for the better. We understand that the only way to overcome eating disorders is to change an individual’s behavior and ways-of-thought. That’s why Adult & Teen Challenge takes a faith-based approach to addiction recovery. By forming a relationship with God and applying the Bible’s teachings to your everyday life, you become physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy, as well as spiritually fulfilled.