Eating Disorder Statistics







  • Eating disorders are the most common chronic illnesses in the female adolescent population, with an incidence of up to 5% (Golden et al., 2003).
  • 95% of reported hospitalized cases of anorexia and more than 90% of hospitalized cases of bulimia in Ontario were women (Gucciardi et al., 1995)
  • Some studies have found that young men represent about 10% of individuals with eating disorders (Steiger and Séguin, 1999)
  • Men are more likely to be affected by binge eating disorder than any other type of eating disorder (Public Health Agency of Canada, 2002).
  • Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness, between 18-20% (Cavanaugh, 1999) .
  • A study published in 2001 reported that 23% of adolescent females were dieting to lose weight (Jones et al., 2001).
  • Surveys have shown that 7.7% of men have a strong fear of being overweight, compared to 18.5% of women (Gadalla and Pran, 2007) .
  • In 2005, more than 500,000 Canadians suffered from some sort of eating disorder (Canadian Mental Health Association).
  • One study suggests that unhealthy dieting behaviours are reported in girls as young as 10 years of age (McVey et al., 2004).
  • By grade ten, 39% of girls believe that they are fat. (Health Behaviour In School-Aged Children 2010 survey, Queens University in partnership with the Public Health Agency of Canada and Health Canada.)


  • In one study, it was found that by the age of 18 years, 80% of girls of normal height and weight reported that they would like to weigh less. (Jones et al, 2001)
  • Significant symptoms of eating disorders were reported by 27% of Ontario schoolgirls aged 12–18 years. (Jones et al, 2001)
  • In a recent study, it was found that 29.3% of the Southern Ontario girls examined were currently trying to lose weight. (McVey et al, 2004)

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