A disturbing new report has found that almost one million
Australians are currently suffering from an eating disorder.
The Deloitte Access Economics report, commissioned by the non-profit
Butterfly Foundation for Eating Disorders, looked at the economic and social
impact of eating disorders including anorexia, bulimia, obesity and
The study found that 913,000 people are living with an eating disorder -
nearly two-thirds of them women. Dr Vivienne Lewis of University of Canberra
and eating disorder specialist says the stereotyped view of eating disorders
only affecting women and adolescents no longer holds true.
"We often think of eating disorders as only occurring in adolescents or
only occurring in females, and that's certainly not the case.
This study actually looked at all ages and all genders, and certainly with
the diagnosis of 'eating disorder not otherwise specified', that's when most
males fit into that category - and people with binge eating disorder as well.
So we're seeing a wider spectrum of eating disorder. It's not just your
emaciated adolescent, it is looking at men and people who might be overweight
and obese who have an eating disorder as well," the specialist said.
report also states that five of the top 10 anorexia hotspots are in Victoria,
two in Queensland and one each in the Australian Capital Territory
, New South Wales and Western
The report found that mortality rates for people with
eating disorders are twice that of the general population. It says more than
1,800 people have died from eating disorders this year - a figure higher than last year's annual road toll.