Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Eating Disorders

We in the West consume many times as much as those in the rest of the world. Obesity is rife in our culture. Yet there are other eating disorders that are also peculiar to our culture: anorexia – self starvation - and bulimia – binge eating followed by vomiting. This week I've been preparing some notes on this for college. Here is a taste of the sort of thing we will be discussing:

2-3% of young girls lack peace about their eating. About 90-95% of anorexics and bulimics are female and more than 90% of most severe cases of anorexia start in teenaged years. Bulimia tends to start a little later than anorexia. In the
UK it is thought that about 1% of school girls and female students suffer from anorexia and between 1-2% with bulimia. Cases of eating disorders have increased steadily from 50s until 90s when they levelled out. Bulimia has now overtaken anorexia. But for the troubled anorexic or bulimic there is hope and comfort to those who seek help through psychotherapy. Though psychoanalysis may give some insight to those with eating disorders, greater hope is offered today by cognitive-behaviour therapy which can be used in conjunction with medication.

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