A closer look at Anorexia

Read my full presentation here.

Anorexia Nervosa is one of the most common eating disorders in the world. It is both an eating disorder and a serious mental health problem. A person with anorexia often has an intense fear of gaining weight, limits their food intake and also thinks about food a lot. They are often too thin and use food as a way of being in control of their lives or as a way to ease anxiety, tension and anger. While anyone can become anorexic it is very unclear what the cause of this very serious disease is. It has been speculated that culture, stress, anxiety, life changes and social pressures from families, friends or the media are contributing factors.

There are many almost invisible signs of anorexia which may not be noticed unless they are looked for. These signs include never eating or eating very little, weighing food and counting calories, moving food around the plate instead of eating it, taking diet pills or in serious cases, taking pills such as laxatives in order to have bowel movements and flush out food. These actions have very serious effects on your whole body and health, not just your weight. The blood thins and the person may develop anaemia.  The person’s blood pressure also lowers which causes the muscles of the heart to physically change. Their skin is easily bruised and is very dry. The body also creates a layer of very fine hair all over the body in order to insulate itself. Anorexia also has many effects on the brain and nerves of the person. They have a fear of gaining weight and can be easily irritated, sad and moody. They also can’t think straight and may faint very often.

Someone who suffers from anorexia can easily get help confidentially but may not think they need to.

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