The Eating Disorder Association of Ireland, Bodywhys, saw a 50% increase in the number of people contacting its services last year.

The figures are contained in the organisation's annual report.

Bodywhys said that last year there was a 30% rise in the number of calls to its helpline, while there was also a 24% increase in emails to its online support service.

Bodywhys Services Manager Harriet Parsons said the rise in people contacting the service is not a cause for concern.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Ms Parsons said it is a reflection of the conversation surrounding the de-stigmatisation of mental health problems.

The organisation's latest research also shows that the highest proportion of calls concerned a person with an eating disorder aged between 25 and 35.

Half of callers were not in any form of professional treatment.

Bodywhys also added that 63% of those who contacted the organisation online were also not in treatment.