Eating Disorders Awareness

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, is the 24 of February through the 4th of March, is designed to help give warning signs and treatment options for eating disorders. If you know someone who eats copies amount of food, is bulimic or anorexic you need to sit up and take control of the situation. There are tips and tricks you can utilize to make those around you feel better about their eating disorders.

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Theme of Eating Disorders Awareness Week

This is the time to learn to pass a mirror or window without undue criticizing your looks, body shape or weight. Be free to focus on your wellness issues rather than the size your butt or the number on a scale. You must find the choice to exercise for fun, health and enjoyment rather than forcing yourself to exercise. Do not contribute to fat talk no matter how much you want to point out how fat you are. This week is the time to help yourself and others who are suffering with eating disorders and to find the opportunity to live with a progressive body image.

It is so sad that you impose limitations on your worth, value and integrity by the way you look. The obsession with looks keeps you from being who you really are. If you look around yourself at those who are photographed on a daily basis, they are not beautiful; they only have the means to employ personal trainers, makeup artistes and hair stylists. Try to remember that you are naturally beautiful.

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Actions to Take Now

Be positive! The beginning of eating disorders starts with words like, “are you gaining weight?”  or “you look great, have you lost weight?” Seem like these statements would not be hurtful, but if someone is obsessive about their weight this is reinforcement that

  • if there is failure to meet expected weight gain during a period of growth. If body weight is 15% lower than expected an eating disorder can be the problem.

If someone fears that gaining weight or becoming fat will reduce their stature in their peer’s eyes and they are thin. Look for an eating disorder.

If you have constant concerns about the size, shape or weight of someone”s body to the point of obsession, there is definitely a eating problem.

Amenorrhea or the essence of at least three consecutive menstrual cycles and there is abnormal thinness or protrusion of bones, suspect an eating disorder.

  • Bulimia Nervosa is typically characterized by cyclical binging and purging. Binging is defined as eating more food than most other people and purging is forcing yourself to “throw up” the foods you just ate. If you find that someone is binging or eating excessively and running to the bathroom more than two times a week, check for signs of bulimia nervosa. Bulimics are very concerned about weight gain and becoming fat. Their fears are almost manic.

Be suspicious if a large amount of food is being consumes and then thrown up, if there are laxatives or diuretics used in unusual numbers or if enemas are being used, excessive exercising or unusual fasting watch for eating disorders.

  • Binge eating is a newly recognized disorder and is characterized by recurrent episodes of eating everything in sight at least two times a week or more in a period of six months. A larger than normal mount of food is consumed in a very short time frame and the person doing the binging just can’t seem to stop.

Watch for signs of someone eating until they are uncomfortable, eating when not hungry, eating very fast, and eating alone. If you find that after you or someone else feels angry or disgusted with them after eating. Watch for overeating tendencies and eating disorders. Most people who are BED are overweight or obese because of extensive calorie intake.

  • Anorexia Athletica is a disorder that contains many eating disorder in one syndrome. Nor a recognized eating disorder the term anorexia athletic is used to denote a disorder by excessive and obsessive exercise. This disorder is found in pre-professional and elite athletes. Those who suffer from Anorexia Athletica engage in excessive workouts and restrict their caloric intake to almost nothing. This disorder puts the sufferer at risk for malnutrition and decreased bone density.
  • There are other eating disorders that include over exercising or exercising to the point of exhaustion. If this is habitual behaviour it can cause anorexia athletica in addition to physical and psychological problems.
  • Overeating is not a disorder per se, but a condition where eating too much during holidays, celebrations or on vacations can lead to habitual excessive eating. Those who engage in overeating regularly tend to eat when they are not hungry and they eat alone so they can indulge in sweets and high calorie foods. Behaviour modification can help with overeating and should be used to stop compulsive overeating disorders.
  • Night eating is a condition that is gaining increased recognition. Night eating is related to obesity and overweight issues. The basis of nigh eating is one who compulsively eat large amounts of food just before going to bed. The compulsion portion is due to night eating all the time rather than just occasionally.
  • Orthorexia is the compulsion to eat “pure” foods. Those who suffer from orthorexia eat the proper foods in excess. They only eat fruits or vegetables and consume high quantities’ of these foods. The lives of orthorexias tend to be spend planning foods. They tend to isolate themselves, have mood changes, and begin to avoid those who do not engage in proper eating. Orthorexia has the risk of causing low body weight and fasting techniques that causes heart failure.

If you or a loved one is a suspected eating disorder sufferer, remember that every day should be a day to watch food and weight issues, but you can find extra help and information during February 24 through March 4 or national Eating Disorders Awareness Week. Eating disorders are becoming epidemic and information needs to be readily available.


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