Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) | Aster Springs

Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID)

Avoidant restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) previously referred to as “selective eating disorder” is like anorexia in that both disorders involve limitations in the amount and/or types of food consumed. However, unlike anorexia, ARFID doesn’t involve any distress about body shape or size or fears of weight gain.

Although many children go through phases of picky or selective eating, a person with ARFID doesn’t consume enough calories to grow and develop properly and, in adults, to maintain basic body function. In children, this results in stalled weight gain and vertical growth; in adults, this results in weight loss and severe medical complications associated with malnutrition. ARFID can also result in problems at school or work, due to difficulties eating with others and extended times needed to eat.

Overview of Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID)

Odyssey Behavioral Healthcare’s AVP of Clinical Services, Kate Fisch, LCSW, discusses avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder and how Aster Springs approaches treatment.

Types of ARFID

There are four different types of ARFID, including:

Signs and Symptoms of ARFID

Symptoms of ARFID include:

Health Consequences of ARFID

Because both anorexia and ARFID involve an inability to meet nutritional needs, both disorders have similar health consequences, including:

How We Treat ARFID

To treat ARFID, our clinicians create an individualized treatment plan for each client based on their specific needs and diagnosis. Some of the evidence-based clinical treatment modalities we utilize to treat ARFID include:


Kate Fisch, LCSW

Kate Fisch is the AVP of Clinical Services for Odyssey’s Eating Disorder Network. With 17 years of clinical leadership and direct client care experience in the eating disorders field, she has a history of innovation, clinical training, and resource development in a variety of eating disorder treatment settings supporting families, clients, and clinicians.
If you’d like to learn more about ARFID treatment program or our other treatment offerings, the compassionate team at Aster Springs is here to help. Call us at (804) 415-7603 or complete our contact form.