Eating Disorders Don't Be So Quick To Judge


Eating Disorders Don't Be So Quick To Judge

Do you find yourself judging people because they're overweight or they appear to be anorexic? It's not a question a lot of people would probably answer honestly if I approached them on the street but unfortunately today, people are judged due to their weight and appearance.


Thousands of men, women and children throughout the United States are overweight and there are many teens and adults that suffer from anorexia and bulimia, and sadly they're judged harshly for the way they look.

It's extremely sad that we live in a world that spends so much mental energy judging and focusing our thoughts and opinions on others appearance and not our own problems and flaws, which I might add, we all have. It's not that most people are mean, they're just uninformed and assume that anyone with a weight problem, especially overweight people, are just lazy and eat all of the time.

It's true today that obesity in this country is at epidemic levels and that our children are growing up overweight due to lack of physical exercise and healthy nutrition. But that's also true of people who are able to maintain a healthier weight, that doesn't mean they're healthy, they just don't eat as much and may get a little more exercise. Most of us don't eat right and definitely don't get enough exercise like we should, so we all need to make changes in our life that includes proper nutrition and physical activity.

The next time you see someone overweight, looking as though they're anorexic, or that shows signs of bulimia, don't be so quick to judge. There are millions of people in this country that suffer from eating disorders like Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Binge Eating and there may be very traumatic and emotional reasons why. Eating disorders are very serious illnesses that adult men, women and children suffer from and there are underlying reasons they have a problem with food.

Eating disorders don't just appear over night for no reason either. Many people who are binge eaters, anorexic or bulimic have had traumatic experiences take place in their lives that were never addressed or fully dealt with and that's what triggered their eating disorder. Depending on your age, small things can be devastating and lead to an eating problem.

You may be surprised to know that some of the reasons behind a person's eating disorder, many people in this country can relate to, they just don't have a problem with food because of them. Instead of eating too much, rarely eating, or purging, they:

  1. Drink too much
  2. Abuse illegal drugs
  3. Abuse prescription drugs
  4. Abuse over the counter medications
  5. Smoke tobacco
  6. Have a gambling problem
  7. Have a shopping addiction
  8. Are addicted to sex
  9. Addicted to porn
  10. Are addicted to the internet
  11. Addicted to gaming

Issues that can trigger an eating disorder can include traumatic events that take place in a person's life and they turn to food in order to cope. The same thing is true for many people who suffer from bulimia nervosa and anorexia. Sometimes what we may consider small and min-ute are traumatic to others, children having to change schools and leaving their friends, losing a pet, moving or having your best friend move away can be devastating when we're young. Other reasons may include:

  1. Death of a loved one or friend
  2. Grief and sadness
  3. Sexual abuse
  4. Mental abuse
  5. Physical abuse
  6. Divorce
  7. Relationship problems
  8. Being treated different in school
  9. Not fitting in with your peers when you're young
  10. Being treated differently than your sibling(s) when you're young by a parent

What we all have to remember is that no matter what the reason is behind a person's eating disorder they don't deserve to be judged or ridiculed. We all know what it feels like to be depressed, sad, lonely, feel desperate and critical of ourselves at times and people suffering from eating disorders feel that way all of the time.

What is Anorexia Nervosa

People suffering from anorexia nervosa don't eat nearly enough because they see themselves as fat. In reality they're extremely thin and underweight and are obsessed with controlling what they eat and drink for fear of gaining weight. The image they have of themselves is distorted, we may see their skeletal frame under the skin but all they see is fat.

Because people suffering from anorexia are obsessed with their weight, they tend to weigh themselves continuously, eat tiny portions of specific foods and sometimes misuse laxatives and diuretics. Without help, their eating disorder can become chronic, meaning they continue to eat this way for a long period of time. This is where their health is at a critical stage and if they don't receive professional help and treatment, they could die. Brain damage, organ failure, and heart damage are just a few of the symptoms associated with chronic anorexia nervosa.

What is Bulimia Nervosa

When a person suffers from bulimia they generally overeat and then purge (vomit) after they have finished eating. They tend to binge-eat large amounts of food at a time then force themselves to throw up in private not wanting anyone to know because they're ashamed and embarrassed. Overeating and purging can take place several times a day or several times a week. People who suffer from bulimia nervosa are not usually underweight. Their weight for the most part is normal or sometimes just a little over weight.

They are unhappy with the shape of their body and want to lose weight, are afraid of gaining weight and very unhappy with themselves. People suffering from bulimia nervosa not only force themselves to throw up after they eat but sometimes excessively use laxatives, diuretics, are obsessed with exercise and some people even fast. Purging and using laxatives continuously causes serious problems which includes acid reflux, gastrointestinal problems, dehydration and imbalanced minerals in the body that can lead to a heart attack.

Binge Eating Disorder

People who suffer from binge eating disorders are commonly overweight and many times obese. They don't make themselves throw up after eating but they are unable to control how much they eat and feel guilty, sad, depressed and ashamed. People who are binge eaters are not obsessed with fasting or exercise, and don't abuse laxatives and diuretics. Binge eating is very common among men and women throughout the United States and they risk cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure.

References
NIMH
Science Daily

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