Eating Disorder Statistics
Eating disorders, including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge-eating disorder (BED) and other specified feeding or eating disorder (OSFED), which may also be known as ‘eating disorders not otherwise specified (EDNOS)’, are responsible for more loss of life than any other mental health condition, and unfortunately, are becoming increasingly more common. Over the last 30-40 years, the prevalence of eating disorders has increased to become a widespread problem across the UK and worldwide.
At Priory, we understand that it can be difficult to cope with an eating disorder. However, if you think that you or someone that you know may be struggling with an eating disorder, it is crucial to know that you are not alone and that expert help is available. Priory is the UK’s largest independent provider of eating disorder services in the UK, with hospitals and wellbeing centres across the country offering expert, established eating disorder treatment.
Our highly trained treatment team recognise that eating disorders are complex conditions that are unique to each individual. As such, we tailor our treatment programmes to meet the individual needs of each patient, empowering you to tackle your symptoms, address any underlying causes and triggers for your destructive eating habits, and achieve a full and sustainable recovery.
UK eating disorder statistics
Research suggests that:
- Between 1.25 and 3.4 million people in the UK are affected by an eating disorder
- Around 25% of those affected by an eating disorder are male
- Most eating disorders develop during adolescence, although there are cases of eating disorders developing in children as young as 6 and in adults in their 70's
- Eating disorder are most common in individuals between the ages of 16 and 40 years old
- Around 10% of people affected by an eating disorder suffer from anorexia nervosa
- The average age of onset for anorexia nervosa is 16-17 years old
- 40% of people affected by an eating disorder suffer from bulimia nervosa
- The average age of onset for bulimia nervosa is 18-19 years old
- The rest of sufferers fall into the BED or OSFED categories of eating disorders
- Research suggests that individuals who have family members with eating disorders are more likely to develop eating disorders themselves when compared to individuals who have no family history of these illnesses
- Eating disorders have the highest mortality rates among psychiatric disorders
- Anorexia nervosa has the highest mortality rate of any psychiatric disorder in adolescence
- The earlier that eating disorder treatment is sought, the better the sufferer’s chance of recovery
These UK eating disorder statistics are derived from data published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), Beat, and Anorexia and Bulimia Care.
Crisis care at Priory
Priory’s customer service team is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to ensure that those in crisis can be signposted to the best possible support, as quickly as possible. The specialist teams at our residential facilities can help to stabilise those in need of immediate assistance for their eating disorder or other mental health concerns.