Surviving Anorexia: How to deal with eating disorders


This is the age of eating disorders! You may begin to wonder, how is this so when there is so much food everywhere. But the issue here is not the food, it is the individual. Eating disorders are rising in a geometric progression amongst young people. They are all about abnormal feeding habits and behavior towards food.

The commonest of these disorders are Orthorexia Nervosa, Anorexia Nervosa, and Bulimia Nervosa. Orthorexia Nervosa is when people obsess over the quantity of food they consume. This is not the usual worry you know. It goes as far as causing bouts of anxiety in the sufferer. 

Anorexia Nervosa is an obsession with being “slim”. The slim babes rock, don’t they? A greater percentage of anorexics are girls. Teen girls especially. Girls in the peak of youth who drool over the hourglass figure of bikini models and Barbie dolls. Most Anorexics are underweight and poorly fed. But their eyes are covered with veils. Veils that make them think they are the fattest people. Below is Sara’s story with Anorexia.

When an Anorexic does not get help. There is a high probability of delving into Bulimia Nervosa. There is an intermediate stage between Anorexia and Bulimia. That intermediate stage is Binge Eating. Binge Eating is uncontrolled eating of food. When a person binges on food in this case, he loses control. The person just goes on to eat and eat until he can barely move. 

Now, the next stage is Bulimia Nervosa. Bulimia Nervosa is inducing vomiting voluntarily with the aid of purgatives. Most Bulimics have injured palettes and very weak teeth because of constant vomiting. Do you see the progression? Orthorexia-Anorexia-Binge Eating-Bulimia.

These disorders cause a lot of harm to the body. In females, it causes irregular menstruation(amenorrhea). The severity of this disease is also expressed in chronic depression and anti-social behaviors. One of the earliest cases of Anorexia was recorded in 1866-1870 in Sir William Gull’s papers. Anorexia is triggered by a lot of factors, ranging from societal stereotypes to careers like modeling and the likes. 

Bulimics are very prone to depression and panic attacks. Bulimia is triggered by psychological stress as well as having as associating with someone suffering the condition. Although most bulimics take their purgatives secretly, it is still easier to diagnose than Anorexia. Living with a family that has so much dieting culture and a strict definition of fitness is a big trigger too.

These disorders are very psychological. The most effective way to deal with them is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy(CBT). CBT engages the behaviour, feelings, and thoughts of individuals. These three things form the core of the CBT. Sufferers are encouraged to maintain healthy diets and body weights to prevent further breakdown. It takes good time for Anorexics and Bulimics to return to normalcy due to how addictive the disorders are. 

A bulimic lady vomiting in the toilet.

What do you think?