Over nine million Americans are predicted to suffer from life-threatening eating disorders, the most common in the world being Bulimia Nervosa and Anorexia Nervosa. Amidst two-hundred western women from ages sixteen to twenty-five, one in two-hundred suffer from Anorexia Nervosa, and one in fifty is bulimic. It might be shocking to hear that fifty to sixty percent of American teenage girls think they are overweight, yet only fifteen or twenty percent of them actually need to lose weight. The individuals that suffer from an eating disorder are at a higher risk of premature death than those who suffer from other psychiatric disorders. As you can tell, the topic of eating disorders is a very serious one that is often mis-categorized or misunderstood. I would like to differentiate the two biggest and most confused illnesses in our society today.
We should first learn the true definitions of Anorexia and Bulimia Nervosa. As of 2012, Mayo Clinic defines Anorexia Nervosa as: “An eating disorder that causes people to obsess about their weight and the food they eat. People with Anorexia attempt to maintain a weight that’s far below normal for their age and height. To prevent weight gain or to continue losing weight, people with Anorexia may starve themselves or exercise excessively.” and Bulimia Nervosa is defined (also by Mayo Clinic) to be: “A serious, potentially life-threatening eating disorder. People with Bulimia may secretly binge --eat large amounts of food-- and then purge, trying to get rid of the extra calories in an unhealthy way.”
Although those who suffer from either disorder see food as a bad thing, there is a very visible difference between how the participants actually view food. Someone suffering from Anorexia catego...
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...ic state reached by the anorexic when they restricted food intake. Either way you look at them, eating disorders are a terrible burden to have to deal with. The price of rehabilitation centers in America have reached peak highs, and there are many people who simply can’t afford to get the help they need. Our society as a whole is beginning to value aesthetics over intellectuality, and the idea of being “perfect” is becoming more and more important. The toll all of this is taking on the youth of our generation is terrifying. The thought of my child having to battle something like this truly scares me. The subject is something that is dearly important to me, and I figured I would share the things I have learned about these two disorders. Whether experiencing them or have experienced either one, its our job to spread the facts to others.
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