Experts say that it is becoming more difficult to meet a woman without the symptoms of eating disorders. According to data from the United States, 8 out of 10 women have some form of an eating disorder.
What are eating disorders
Eating disorders (EDs) are the exclusive product of the modern model culture, but the first reliable cases of anorexia nervosa – an eating disorder in which people bring themselves to exhaustion with dietary restrictions – were described in the early Middle Ages. However, the women would exhaust themselves for the sake of greater intimacy with God rather than to have an impeccable appearance: it was believed that a well-fed person is incapable of such intimacy.
Today, there is no longer any doubt that EDs are of a genetic nature. Every year a certain number of girls and boys are born who are prone to developing eating disorders.
However, genetics does not mean fate. If the conditions for growing up are favorable, EDs may not develop. However, in the presence of adverse factors, these children will get sick first.
Oddly enough, infectious diseases also had a role in the development of EDs, and mononucleosis (a viral disease with a high fever) suffered in childhood or adolescence can trigger the development of the disorder.
This illness with a high fever causes decreased appetite, temporary refusal to eat, and weight loss – in the presence of a genetic vulnerability, this is enough to start an eating disorder.
Modern dietary culture
It is common in society to be afraid of overweight much more than eating disorders. The only solution to the problem of excess weight that modern culture has generated is dietary restrictions.
An adolescent with a tendency to develop EDs tends to do better in weight loss by keeping to a diet together with peers. But it is the diet that triggers the hidden mechanisms of developing an eating disorder.
Cultivate a positive attitude to the body and physical activity in the family, offer children a varied diet, do not divide food into “harmful” and “healthy” and do not limit your ideas of beauty to the narrow limits of a certain number of kilograms.
Fashion for a certain figure
Fashion and media dictate to us what kind of body we need to consider attractive and successful, and only a small percentage of women and men meet this standard by birth. Other people are highly dissatisfied with their bodies, with the desire to change it at all costs.
Physical dissatisfaction forces us to look for ways to change body weight and shape: not only diets and hunger strikes are used, but also exhausting workouts, vomiting, laxatives, and diuretics. These attempts to control weight and nutrition can lead to the development of an eating disorder.
An example of the loved ones
For a long time, it was believed that eating disorders are typical of young people and that only adolescents and young girls suffer from them. Today, experts see that the incidence curve is growing in both directions – both in the direction of decreasing the age when the disorder begins (girls get sick with anorexia nervosa at the age of 9-11), and in the direction of its increasing.
It is no longer news for specialists to see a 45-year-old mother and a 17-year-old daughter at the consultation, both of them having an eating disorder.