Do No Harm! MyNetDiary Supports Healthful Eating Behaviors
- 2 Minutes Read
Food tracking is helpful to many people, but is not helpful for those with, or at risk for, eating disorders. MyNetDiary is committed to supporting healthy eating and behaviors. Learn more about eating disorders and resources to get help.
While tracking food and exercise can be a valuable strategy for users wanting to improve their health, unfortunately, it can reinforce unhealthy behaviors for those with, or at risk for, eating disorders.
MyNetDiary is committed to reducing these risky behaviors by implementing safeguards such as not allowing users to set rapid rates of weight loss or set target weights below a healthy range. We will continue to evaluate our site and apps and consider additional strategies to protect our users.
The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) notes eating disorders are "serious but treatable mental and physical illnesses that can affect people of all genders, ages, races, religions, ethnicities, sexual orientations, body shapes, and weights."
NEDA describes several common eating disorders below:
Anorexia Nervosa: weight loss (or lack of appropriate weight gain in growing children); difficulties maintaining an appropriate body weight for height, age, and stature; and, in many individuals, distorted body image. People with anorexia generally restrict the number of calories and the types of food they eat. Some people with the disorder also exercise compulsively, purge via vomiting and laxatives, and/or binge eat.
Bulimia Nervosa: characterized by a cycle of bingeing and compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting designed to undo or compensate for the effects of binge eating
Binge Eating Disorder: recurrent episodes of eating large quantities of food (often very quickly and to the point of discomfort); a feeling of a loss of control during the binge; experiencing shame, distress or guilt afterwards; and not regularly using unhealthy compensatory measures (e.g., purging) to counter the binge eating.
Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorders: encompasses individuals who do not meet strict criteria for anorexia or bulimia but still have a significant eating disorder.
NEDA offers a brief online screening tool. Please use this tool if you feel that you might have, or could be at risk for, an eating disorder. Although the tool cannot diagnose an eating disorder, it can heighten self-awareness and be an important cue to seek professional help.
NEDA also provides referral resources and a 24-hour helpline.
The take home message is that eating disorders are harmful, potentially life-threatening disorders and care should be taken to reduce your risk of developing, reigniting, or exacerbating an existing eating disorder. If you suspect that you currently have, have had, or are at high risk for developing an eating disorder, please discontinue use of MyNetDiary immediately and seek care from a qualified eating disorders health professional (your physician can be a great resource for a referral).
Originally published on Mar 8, 2012,
Updated: Updated: Feb 4, 2020