Anorexia nervosa is a a psychiatric disorder characterized by low body weight and body image distortion with an obsessive fear of gaining weight. Individuals with anorexia are known to commonly control body weight through the means of voluntary starvation, purging, vomiting, excessive exercise, or other weight control measures, such as diet pills or diuretic drugs.

Anorexia itself means or translates as ‘loss of appetite for nervous reasons’ with physical symptoms including rapid, extreme or dramatic weight loss; loss of menstrual periods, the growth of a layer of downy hair on the body (lanugo); dizzy spells and fainting; extreme tiredness; feeling cold; muscle loss and weakness; dry skin and hair loss

Behaviour which arise can be similar to OCD and ritualistic and include strict counting of calories, cutting out certain foods or entire foods groups, skipping meals, excessive exercise; denial of hunger, withdrawing from social activities, wearing baggy clothes and/or lots of layers,

People will also chew their food before spitting it out The OCD aspect can be about timing, timing the meals to be exactly a certain time in-between meals, and any deviation from this can cause extreme anxiety, panic and annoyance. Some people will separate their food for example an apple into 4 parts and then proceed to eat that apple in bite sizes over strict timings of 5 minutes for example.

Other psychological symptoms can include an inability to concern rate, mood swings, and both extreme depression and anxiety

There is often an idea maybe you could call it a meme that seeing size 0 models, skinny celebrities and the androgynous images are responsible for people developing anorexia, but there doesn’t seem to be any truth in this and in truth it seems to affect the media more which in turn effects certain individuals who for some reason then believe that it directly cause anorexia. Indeed the size 0 and androgynous issue is a problem in itself and along with the ‘diet’ industry, certain elements of the food industry,  the media and the meme of skinny equals beautiful need to be tackled in and of itself for all the anxiety and social issues it’s causing.

Eating disorder clients tend to above average intelligence, perfectionists, high achievers and typically have a competive streak. A typical and mainstream view of anorexics is that they overwhelmingly teenage girls, this isn’t strictly speaking true – eating disorders affect males and people of various ages.

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Now this bit can cause controversy but here it goes – eating disorders are NOT about food! 

The Media, Eating, Dieting and the Ideal 
It’s difficult or maybe impossible to not be effected by the constant bombardment from mainstream media through TV, movies, fashion and gossip magazines, newspapers, on-line articles and advertisements flashing-up, billboards, flyers, posters in shops and on notice boards, endless celebrity chit-chat, people just having to tell you something … about what you should be looking like, who you should be looking like, what you should be wearing, what’s healthy, what’s not …

Eventually you will need to take a step back, take a look around you and a very deep look inside yourself and make a decision. Something along the lines of “what am I doing, what am I doing to myself?”

How Hypnotherapy can help
Hypnotherapy, life coaching and NLP can help you to gain a much better perspective over yourself, how you ideally want to be and how to get there. There will be a root cause of your eating disorder and by finding this and resolving this will massively in and of itself. Hypnotherapy also helps you get into the right mind space to be able to see things differently, create better coping strategies and establish a much better and healthier outlook towards food.

For an overview on anorexia from the BBC please click HERE

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