What is disordered eating? And why do 20% of the world's kids show signs of it? Experts explain

Early intervention is helpful for people showing signs of both eating disorders and disordered eating, said therapist Jennifer Rollin, founder of The Eating Disorder Center in Rockville, Maryland.

This story is part of an occasional series covering disordered eating and diet culture.

(CNN)More than 1 in 5 kids and adolescents around the world show signs of disordered eating, according to a new study.

The study highlights a serious public health issue that often goes underreported and underrecognized, according to the meta-analysis published Monday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.
Researchers reviewed and analyzed 32 studies from 16 countries and found that 22% of children and adolescents showed disordered eating behaviors. Those numbers were higher among girls, older adolescents and those with a higher body mass index, or BMI, according to the study.