SOUTH MIAMI (CBS4) – Yo-Yo dieting leads to eating disorders, and two South Florida woman are uniquely qualified to say so.

Yo-Yo dieting is prevalent, but psychiatrists say 20 to 30 percent of all dieters end up with an eating disorder.

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A South Miami center specializes in eating disorders and the two women who founded the the center are credentialed in a very unique way.  The owners themselves, Dr. Wendy Oliver-Pyatt and her business partner Vicki Kroviak, were yo-yo dieters when they were college roommates and that lead to severe eating disorders for both of them.

They say it was a very dark time in their lives.

“It brings back sad memories,” said a teary-eyed Dr. Oliver-Pyatt to CBS4’s Cynthia Demos while looking back at college photos.

The pair say like most college girls they wanted to be thinner and fit in.  They did just about every diet in the book until they realized they were both sick.  While they were each seeking treatment their therapists told them they could no longer be roommates.

Now, very much cured and 20 years later, the women opened a clinic to help others with eating disorders, the Oliver-Pyatt Center.

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According to the National Eating Disorder Association, 15 percent of female teens and girls in their 20’s have anorexia.

Also, recent studies suggest that up to 7% of U.S. females have had bulimia at some time in their lives and that binge eating disorder affects 0.7-4% of the general population.

At the center patients are taught how to eat, cook and focus their mind.

They’ve treated about 200 people and have a staff of 50.

Their focus to getting cured is ‘mindful eating.’

“Mindful eating is about taking care of yourself and taking yourself seriously and getting to the root of the issue that sparks the disorder,” said Dr. Oliver-Pyatt.

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Click Here for more information about the center.