Eating disorders are becoming more and more prevalent in todayís society. As our fascination with slimness, dieting, and youth grows, more and more men and women are becoming caught up in the dieting cycle. Anorexia is a terrible eating disorder that affects millions of young women and even some men in our society. Refusing to eat, anorexics become dangerously thin and put themselves at risk for serious health related consequences. If you or anyone you know is suffering from anorexia, it is important to seek anorexia treatment as soon as possible.
The Signs of Anorexia
Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by an obsession for thinness and an extreme fear of eating. The disorder begins slowly, and may manifest through minor weight loss or fears of becoming fat or overweight. Eventually, the signs of anorexia become more obvious and include extreme weight loss, loss of body muscle and fat, and the growth of fine downy hair all over the body. Anorexics may become depressed, exercise obsessively, and retreat from normal activities. Eventually, anorexia can result in serious health problems, including heart palpitations, anemia and other vitamin deficiencies, and even heart attack or stroke.
The Cause of Anorexia
No one is really sure what causes anorexia. Anorexia statistics show that the eating disorder is most prevalent in western societies, where the ideal of thinness and weight loss is the norm. The eating disorder may be perpetuated by the media, where pictures of anorexic women are often touted as beautiful. Anorexia in men may also be the result of cultural ideals. Anorexia may also be triggered by genetics or by particular events in a personís life. Anorexia seems to be related to emotional trauma, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, and family issues that are internalized by young men and women.
Anorexia must be treated in order to prevent serious health problems and death. Many anorexics suffer from extreme depression, and thus benefit from antidepressants and psychological counseling. Of course, eating is the only way to increase weight and eventually restore health. Without treatment, few anorexics are able to escape the clutches of the disorder, and many become life-long sufferers or die as a result of their disease.