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What Is Anorexia?

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Anorexia What Is Anorexia??? Anorexia is an eating disorder characterised by extreme dieting to the point of starvation and an anorexic person is unable to discriminate between normal and abnormal body images. It is commonest among young girls and may be caused by social, genetic or psychological factors, or a combination of these. The incidence of anorexia is increasing but it is not known whether this is due to better reporting and diagnosis of anorexia or whether it is increasing in real terms. Anorexia is commonest in women between 10 and 30 years of age. In rare cases, it can present in adulthood or before puberty. Many more girls than boys are affected and it is only seen in countries where thinness is considered desirable. Research suggests that young people who diet during early adolescence are at particular risk of developing eating disorders later in life. What Are The Causes Of Anorexia??? Psychological/emotional factors. Anorexia has been variously described as 'the slimmer's disease', 'a relentless pursuit of thinness' and 'a morbid fear of fatness'. However, for many sufferers anorexia is not just about dieting or losing weight, rather it is an outward sign of deep psychological and emotional turmoil. ...read more.


Physical symptoms * Extreme loss of weight in the absence of illnesses such as cancer * Abnormal levels of activity, including excessive exercising * Sleeplessness, the person often does not feel fatigued despite exhausting restlessness * Slow pulse and low blood pressure, which can cause fainting * Low body temperature, person feels cold all the time, even in hot weather * A layer of fine downy hair grows all over the body * Cessation of normal menstruation * Low blood potassium levels, which usually indicate the use of laxatives to purge food Psychological symptoms * An abnormal drive to lose weight even if the person is not overweight * History of psychological disturbance and conflict with one or both parents * A refusal to acknowledge that there is a problem * Distortion of body image - people see themselves as grossly obese even when their ribs are sticking out * Denial of femininity in female sufferers * "A-type" personality - an urge to over-achieve and a tendency to severe self-criticism * Constant preoccupation with food - while they themselves are starving to death, they often cook vast meals for other members of the family * Craftiness. ...read more.


Experts believe those who fall victim to eating disorders think if they look better and live up to ideal images --they will feel better. Many start out just wanting to lose a few pounds or add some muscle. But, using food to cope with a feeling of inadequacy is usually where the trouble begins. That might be that they have a low sense of self and they might feel more powerful when they can lose weight. That might be that they have an addictive personality, they've somehow become addicted to food as though it were a drug.' There is an increase in the number of male teenagers suffering from a disease which was once associated with women. But, there are discreet ways to get help through organizations and since he began getting treatment, John is slowly gaining back his self esteem and his body. What are the warning signs for eating disorders? * weight increase or decrease * The development of abnormal eating habits such as severe dieting or secretive bingeing. * Compulsive or excessive exercising and intense preoccupation with body weight and image. Eating disorders include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and compulsive overeating. All can have life threatening consequences not only for girls and women but for also for boys and men. ...read more.

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