Eating Disorders and Body Dysmorphic Disorders (BDD)
"One must still have chaos in oneself to give birth to a dancing star"
- Friedrich Nietzsche
Anorexia nervosa is a life-threatening mental illness where sufferers restrict the amount of food that they eat, they experience a deep fear of gaining weight, and they may do a lot of exercise or use laxatives to burn calories. Sufferers of anorexia often have a distorted image of themselves, and think they’re larger than they really are. They experience a deep fear of gaining weight, and will usually challenge the idea that they should. There are two sub-types of anorexia:
Restricting Anorexia: Sufferers of this type of anorexia would usually restrict their food intake and frequently over-exercise to maintain a low weight.
Binge/purge type anorexia: With this type of anorexia, people would restrict their food but also binge on foods and induce vomiting.
Sometimes, someone’s symptoms may not exactly match all the criteria a doctor checks for to diagnose anorexia. For example, they may remain at a weight considered “normal” for their age, sex, and expected development. It is very important that all sufferers receive treatment as quickly as possible.
Sufferers of bulimia nervosa are caught in a cycle of eating large quantities of food (called bingeing), and then trying to compensate for that overeating by vomiting, taking laxatives or diuretics, fasting, or exercising excessively (called purging). During a binge, people with bulimia do not feel in control of how much or how quickly they are eating. Some people also say that they feel as though they’re disconnected from what they’re doing. The food eaten during a binge may include things the person would usually avoid. Episodes of bingeing are often very distressing because people with bulimia place strong emphasis on their weight and shape, and may see themselves as much larger than they are.
Diabulimia, known also as Diabetic Bulimia, is a combination of an eating disorder and Type 1 Diabetes, in which people with type 1 diabetes deliberately give themselves less insulin than they need or stop taking it altogether for the purpose of weight loss.Sufferers of diabulimia may well show the signs associated with other eating disorders, such as symptoms of anorexia. On the other hand, controlling their insulin may be the only way they manipulate their weight and they otherwise have fairly normal eating patterns.
Bing Eating Disorder (BED)
Binge eating disorder (BED) is a serious mental illness where people experience a loss of control and eat large quantities of food on a regular basis. People with binge eating disorder eat large quantities of food, over a short period of time (called bingeing). These binges are very distressing. Sufferers find it difficult to stop during a binge even if they want to, and some people with binge eating disorder have described feeling disconnected from what they’re doing during a binge, or even struggling to remember what they’ve eaten afterwards. Binge eating usually takes place in private, though the person may eat regular meals outside their binges. People will often have feelings of guilt and disgust at their lack of control during and after binge eating.
Orthorexia is a term was coined by Dr Steven Bratman in 1997, and it refers to an unhealthy obsession with eating “pure” food. Food considered “pure” or “impure” can vary from person to person. As with other eating disorders, the eating behaviour involved – “healthy” or “clean” eating in this case – is used to cope with negative thoughts and painful feelings, or to gain a sense of control. Orthorexia sufferers might feel extremely anxious or guilty if they eat food they feel is unhealthy.
Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)
Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is a mental health condition where a person spends a lot of time worrying about flaws in their appearance. These flaws are often unnoticeable to others. BDD can seriously affect a sufferer's daily life, including their work, social life and relationships.
Muscle Dysmorphic Disorder (MDD) is a type of Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). It is popularly known as “Bigorexia” by the media. It consists of a preoccupation with not being sufficiently muscular or lean (when this is not the case). They worry that they are small and undeveloped.In efforts to fix their perceived smallness, people with muscle dysmorphia lift weights, do resistance training, and exercise compulsively. They may take steroids or other muscle-building drugs. The constant preoccupation with perceived smallness interferes with their social life, relationships, academic and career accomplishments.
Eating Disorder Therapy
Eating disorders thrive on shame, which holds its victims trapped within their illness. Eating disorders affect both men and women and it is very important that sufferers receive therapy as quickly as possible. We believe that full recovery from an eating disorder and trauma is possible and we recognise that an eating disorder is an illness that begins in the mind, not the body. Our approach is holistic, tailored to address the root causes of an eating disorder, not just the symptoms. Therapy can include a bespoke combination of individual therapy, nutritional therapy, group therapy, family support, meditation and body based approaches.
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If you would like to discuss your therapy options with a member of our staff, give us a call on 08001934551 today or send us an email firstname.lastname@example.org.