Essay about Eating Disorders in College Athletes

Essay about Eating Disorders in College Athletes

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Eating Disorders in College Athletes
Every year thousands of students are recruited to be student athletes at colleges and every year approximately 8 million individuals suffer from eating disorders. According to Psychology Applied to Modern Life, eating disorders are defined as “severe disturbances in eating behavior characterized by preoccupation with weight and unhealthy efforts to control weight (Weiten, Dunn, Hammer, 2011, p. 470).” Eating disorders can include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder. With risk factors such as low self esteem, pressure from family, friends and coaches and access to unlimited to food it is no wonder that collegiate athletes have higher rates of eating disorders than regular college students. Living in a dorm full of mostly athletes it has become extremely apparent to me that these athletes struggle with immense of pressure and one way of getting around this pressure is bulimia. Certain sports put more pressure on athletes to be a certain size and perform at a certain level than others.
Regardless of what sport an athlete is participating, once they reach a certain level there is an enormous amount of pressure. When an athlete is depriving himself or herself of food or making themselves puke after in taking food, they can start to go down a path of malnutrition, which will have a huge toll on their performance. Athlete’s battling eating disorders may experience symptoms such as anemia, muscle loss, osteoporosis, electrolyte imbalance, heart problems and hormone changes (Harms, 2012). A large majority of the time, when athletes are dropping weight they are going to end up developing problems such as fatigue, nutrient deficiencies and impaired growth which are only going ...


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...Black, D.R.(1988). Male and female college athletes: Prevalence of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. Athletic Training, 23, 137-140.

Powers, P.S., & Johnson, C. (1996). Small victories: Prevention of eating disorders among athletes. Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment and Prevention, 4, 364-367.

Leff, S., & Hoyle, R. (1995). Young athlete's perceptions of parental support and pressure. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 24(2), 187-203. Retrieved November 18, 2013, from http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF01537149#page-1

Weiten, W., Dunn, D.S., Hammer, E.Y. (2011). Psychology Applied to Modern Life. Belmont, Ca. Cengage Learning
Anorexia Nervosa. (n.d.). Anorexia Nervosa. Retrieved November 21, 2013, from http://medicalcenter.osu.edu/patientcare/healthcare_services/mental_health/mental_health_about/eating/anorexia_nervosa/Pages/index.aspx

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