A person with an eating disorder may focus excessively on their weight and shape, leading them to make unhealthy choices about food with damaging results to their health.

Contrary to what most people believe, eating disorders aren’t about food. They are often a symptom of underlying issues.

To the outside world the eating disorder seems destructive and dangerous, but to the sufferer, the eating disorder is their friend.

The eating disorder provides a function for the individual. It makes them feel safe, gives them a sense of power and achievement, and it is always there for them no matter what. It is their lifejacket in a stormy sea.

It is often difficult for people to understand eating disorders, with parents and carers often wondering why the individual doesn’t just stop doing what they’re doing and eat.

But eating disorders are not a choice. They are mental health disorders, which the sufferer needs specialised treatment to recover from.