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Eating disorders

Do you have a troubled relationship with food intake and with your body? Here you will find basic information on the topic of difficulties with food. You can also get support in a personal counselling session if needed. 


Food affects our health, our drive and our enjoyment of life. Apart from keeping us fit for work, it brings pleasure, helps us maintain friendships and is therefore more than just necessary for life.

Healthy eating behaviour is primarily controlled by the hunger and satiety mechanism. It is rhythmically scheduled into our daily routine and is geared to physiological and socio-psychological requirements.

We speak of disturbed eating behaviour when the above mechanisms function to a limited extent or no longer function at all. When an excessive preoccupation with nutrition and one's own body (image) leads to the emotional, social and physical integrity being violated, we speak of an eating disorder.

Eating disorders have many different forms and manifestations, but they have one thing in common: an inappropriate preoccupation with food. 

Different types of eating disorders

Anorexia nervosa (anorexia)

«Anorexia nervosa or anorexia insidiously changes the whole life of the person affected and their environment. Whilst the skinniness of the body is quickly noticed, those around the person are often slow to notice the psychological and physical suffering behind it.»

Bulimia nervosa (bulimia)

«Bulimia nervosa manifests itself in alternating uncontrolled binge eating and simultaneous attempts to reduce weight and remain slim.»

Binge eating disorder (binge eating)

«Emotional eating without being able to stop and with progressive weight gain.»

Obesity (adiposity)

«Obesity (Latin adeps for 'fat') or adiposity is a nutritional and metabolic disorder of severe overweight, manifested by an excessive increase in body fat with pathological effects.»

Orthorexia nervosa (compulsive healthy eating)

«When the desire to eat healthily becomes a compulsion.»

(Orthorexia nervosa is not part of the ICD-10 classification system.)

More comprehensive information

The above information comes from the website of the Swiss Society for Eating Disorders (SGES). There you will also find further helpful information (in German) on problems related to eating behaviour:

On the webpage of the Inselspital (University Hospital of Bern) you can find further resources (in German) regarding eating behaviour disorders (via PEP, i.e. Prävention Essstörung Praxisnah).

The «Berner Gesundheit» foundation has the following core tasks, which include: Health promotion, prevention and addiction counselling. You can find more information on the topic of eating disorders on their website:

  • Counselling services (overview)

  • Strengthen your well-being (overview)

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