Eating Concerns in Men

Despite popular belief...

  • 10 to 15% of people with bulimia are male
  • 5 to 10% of people with anorexia are male
  • 40% of people with binge eating disorder are male
  • 5 to 20% of male university students are at risk
  • The typical age of onset for eating disorders in men is at 14 to 16 years of age

Are eating disorders different for men?

There are important differences in the way men experience eating & exercise disorders.  According to Dr. Roberto Olivardia, researcher & co-author of The Adonis Complex, males tend to:

  • Experience greater weight fluctuations than females
  • Are more likely to be overweight or obese at the start of the eating disorder
  • Have a clearer perception of their ideal body weight
  • Pursue leanness & muscularity over thinness per se
  • Binge more often, especially on carbohydrates
  • Exercise excessively
  • Have an increased prevalence for substance abuse
  • Have more sexual conflicts
  • Be less likely to seek treatment


National Association for Men with Eating Disorders:
Adapted from Brown University & Psychology Today

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