(HealthDay News) – Anti-obesity messages may be backfiring, encouraging the development of eating disorders, according to an article in The Wall Street Journal.

Several studies are referenced in the article, including one of patients recently treated for eating disorders at a Barcelona hospital. In 2010, nearly 38% were previously overweight, an increase from 13% in 2001.

In another study, at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia, 47% of patients admitted to the eating disorders clinic with severe, anorexia-like symptoms in 2009 were previously overweight, vs. 8% in 2005.

Also mentioned in the Journal‘s article are the updated criteria for eating disorders in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (the DSM-5).

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