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Old January 3rd, 2011, 05:39 PM   #1
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Name: Kathy
Join Date: January 17, 2010
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Default What is Anorexia and Bulimia?

What Is Anorexia and Bulimia?


Anorexia and Bulimia are both eating disorders that are categorised by an obsession with food and a distortion of body image, meaning that someone may see themselves as much larger than they really are. Both disorders are much more common in girls, but can also occur in boys.

Eating disorders are believed to be caused by a lack of control in an individual’s life. A person may use not eating as something that they can control, when the rest of their life is out of control. It can also occur when a person does not feel good enough, or adequate. There have also been cases where people do it to hinder the onset of puberty.

Anorexia Nervosa

People with Anorexia Nervosa have an intense fear of gaining weight and refuse to maintain a healthy body weight. People with this disorder begin to eat very little in an attempt to lose weight. The average calorie intake per day of an anorexic is between 600- 800 calories, although this can become much more extreme.

Anorexia nervosa is a serious mental illness that can cause great damage to the body, and in some cases, death.

Symptoms

• Rapid weight loss.
• Obsession with calories and fat content
• Fear of gaining weight despite being underweight.
• Rituals with food such as cutting food into very small pieces or refusing to eat around others.
• Purging behaviours: Taking diet pills or laxatives, frequent exercise or making themselves vomit.
• Intolerance to the cold.
• Depression
• Loss of periods in females.

Bulimia Nervosa

People with Bulimia Nervosa also have a fear of gaining weight, although they tend to stay within a healthy weight limit or have extreme fluctuations in weight. People with Bulimia often binge and then partake in purging behaviours such as listed above. They sometimes also starve themselves in order to compensate for their bingeing behaviour.

Purging activities such as making yourself vomit can be very dangerous to health. It can cause problems such as dehydration, hormonal imbalances, depletion of important minerals and damage to vital organs.

Symptoms

• Secrecy surrounding eating habits.
• Disappearance of large amounts of food.
• Alternating eating habits: between overeating and fasting.
• Going to bathroom after meals.
• Excessive exercising.
• Scars on the knuckles or hands.
• Frequent fluctuations in weight.

Where Can I get Help?

There are many confidential helplines and internet chat services that you can use if you think you may have an eating disorder:

UK

Beat

Childline

Eating Disorder Support

USA

Something Fishy

National Eating Disorders Association

F.E.A.S.T

Australia

Eating Disorders Foundation

Samaritans

Most of these websites have helplines that you can call.

What Should I do if I Think Someone I know has an Eating Disorder?

If you are close enough to the person, you should try and approach them. If you decide to approach someone with an eating disorder here are a few things to remember:
• Tell them that you are there to help, and that you care for them.
• Try to persuade them to seek help.
• Do not try to force them to eat.
• Do not blame them for their problems.
• Do not negatively comment on their appearance or weight.
• Do not get angry at them for their problems, recovery takes time and requires patience.

The most important thing is to be there for them. If you feel that someone you knows health is in severe danger from an eating disorder, tell a trusted adult so that they can get the help they need.

BMI calculator:
http://apps.nccd.cdc.gov/dnpabmi/Calculator.aspx
BMI Weight Status
Below 18.5 Underweight
18.5 - 24.9 Normal
25.0 - 29.9 Overweight
30.0 and Above Obese

Note that these calculators are not entirely accurate. Your BMI number does not take into account muscle mass, and this may cause your BMI to appear obese when you are in fact a healthy weight. You also do not need to be underweight to struggle with an eating disorder.

You brought hate, pills and knives,
And this is how the tale begins.
Itís your life, exist and wonder why.
When it only fails to work,
It only fails to work sometimes

Last edited by Fiction; June 8th, 2013 at 10:05 AM.
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