NHS staff have been working to challenge the stereotypes and stigmas around eating disorders, such as anorexia, bulimia and binge eating.

Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust is supporting the national Eating Disorders Awareness campaign, which runs this week.

Sarah Geere, team manager for the East and Central Lancashire Eating Disorder Services, said: “Anyone can develop an eating disorder, regardless of age, sex or cultural or racial background. It’s really important people know support is available and where they can get it.

“People who are suffering from an eating disorder may be experiencing low self-esteem, problems with friends or family relationships or problems at school or work. They can start to use food to help them cope with painful situations or feelings without even realising it.

“The sooner people get help the better chance they have of making a full recovery so if you have a worry, no matter how small, it’s always better to look into it or ask for help.”

If you think you may be suffering from an eating disorder or are concerned about the health of a family member or friend, the advice is to visit you GP in the first instance.