Health Services

Eating Disorders

Eating disorders affect individuals from every walk of life. People of any age, gender or race can be afflicted. Among the eating disorders you may encounter on a college campus are:

Anorexia Nervosa
A key identifying factor for this eating disorder is extreme thinness. But people with anorexia - 95 percent of whom are women - typically do not acknowledge the disorder because they don't view themselves as thin. Instead, they feel a compulsive need to diet.

While students suffering from anorexia often get good grades and are considered personable, their eating patterns include crash dieting, consuming foods with very little caloric value, or not eating at all. Exercise is performed at an extreme level, and because starvation affects hormone levels, women suffering from anorexia usually do not experience menstruation.

More information is available on the Mayo Clinic's webpage on anorexia bulimia.

Characterized by binge eating that lasts anywhere from a few hours to several days, bulimia is more common among college students than anorexia nervosa. During a binge, people with this eating disorder consume enormous amounts of food, often focusing on junk food. The binge is usually followed by a purging period, when induced vomiting, laxatives and exercise are used in an effort to get rid of the extreme caloric intake.

People with bulimia are typically not as thin as those with anorexia. They are often good students, and it usually not difficult to convince someone with bulimia to seek treatment.

Some people may suffer from bulimia and anorexia. Both are serious diseases with side effects that can include death.

More information is available on the Mayo Clinic's webpage on bulimia.

Overeating is a problem found throughout all of society, including college campuses. There is controversy among medical experts as to whether or not there is a genetic connection to overeating and obesity, but the experts agree that a healthy eating combined with exercise can help keep obesity under control. More information is available on the Mayo Clinic's webpage on obesity.

More Information

To find out more about anorexia, bulimia or obesity visit the Wellness Center, call (518) 629-7468 or email

All visits and conversations are confidential.