Prior studies have discovered that young individuals who experience discrimination or teasing about their weight have higher rates of eating disorders, self-harm, depression and social isolation. However, these studies have primarily focused on high-income and white participants, which makes it unclear whether these findings apply to other groups as well.
This is why researchers from the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis conducted a study to examine the link between eating disorders and weight stigma in a socioeconomically and racially/ethnically diverse sample of more than 1,500 young individuals in the United States.
An eating disorder is a psychological condition that leads to the onset of unhealthy feeding habits. Disorders may start with an obsession of body shape, body weight or food. In serious cases, eating disorders can cause severe health consequences and may even result in death if left untreated. The most common eating disorders include restrictive/avoidant food intake disorder, pica, rumination disorder, binge eating disorder, bulimia nervosa and anorexia nervosa.
Laura Hooper, a PhD. student from the institution who is the leader of the study, stated that the team’s results added to the increasing evidence that mistreatment based on weight was detrimental to the health of young individuals.
In the report, the researchers reported a strong link between eating disorders and weight teasing in both young adults and teens. They explained that weight teasing during adolescence was linked to the start of dieting, noting that higher rates of overeating and dieting were observed years later. In the study’s findings, which were reported in the “International Journal of Eating Disorders,” the researchers stated that eating disorders and weight teasing were common among young people from poorer families as well as young individuals of color, explaining that the connection between eating disorders and weight teasing was similar across socioeconomic and racial/ethnic groups.
However, the study failed to prove if weight teasing directly caused eating disorders. In a news release by the university, Hooper stated that the study offered evidence against the assumptions that eating disorders and weight teasing mainly affected white young individuals from affluent backgrounds. She added that future policy efforts and research should prioritize the needs of young people from poorer families as well as young individuals of color while also addressing weight stigma.
Hooper maintained that establishing policies such as anti-bullying rules in schools and legal protections to safeguard young people from mistreatment based on weight should also encompass input from young individuals who have been impacted by weight stigma.
To help people who are afflicted by eating disorders, a number of companies, including Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: TRYP) (OTCQB: TRYPF), are developing a new variety of medications, such as those which are psychedelics based, to give sufferers better outcomes.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Tryp Therapeutics Inc. (CSE: TRYP) (OTCQB: TRYPF) available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/TRYPF
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