Sprinting through busy city streets, huffing on the treadmill and puffing on the elliptical, Lindsey Hall was running herself to exhaustion.
Despite shin splints and aching stress fractures, the then 17-year-old Texan used to hit the gym two-to-three times a day. It was not long until her seemingly healthy habits transformed into a harmful obsession.
Exercise can benefit one’s mental and physical health, but it can also be dangerous when taken to the extreme. Sometimes a well-intended plan to become fit triggers an eating disorder, says Beth Riley, a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist and expert at the Eating Recovery Center.
Exercise-related eating disorders are increasing among younger adults. According to a 2012 study by Statista, approximately 15,000 U.S. adults aged 18 to 25 were diagnosed with an eating disorder. A large portion of the diagnoses were not bulimia or anorexia nervosa.
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By Meredith Sheldon