What is Bulimia Nervosa?
An eating disorder characterized by abnormal perception of body image, constant craving for food and binge eating, followed by self-induced vomiting or laxative use.
Who are most affected?
Adolescents or young adults, usually female.
What are the symptoms?
Recurrent episodes of binge eating (rapid consumption of a large amount of food in a short time, usually less than 2 hours), plus at least 3 of the following:
- -Preference for high-calorie, convenience foods during a binge.
- -Secretive eating during a binge.
- -Termination of an eating binge with purging measures, such as laxative use or self-induced vomiting.
- -Depression and guilt following an eating binge.
- -Repeated attempts to lose weight with severely restrictive diets, self-induced vomiting and use of laxatives or diuretics.
- -Frequent weight fluctuations.
- -No underlying physical disorder.
RISK INCREASES WITH
- -Strict, compulsive, perfectionist family environment.
- -Anorexia nervosa.
- -Stress, including lifestyle changes, such as moving or starting a new school or job.
- -Preoccupation with being physically attractive.
- -Ballet dancers, gymnasts, models, cheerleaders and athletes.
HOW TO PREVENT?
- -Encourage rational attitude about weight.
- -Enhance self-esteem.
- -Avoid overly high self-expectations.
- -Avoid stress.
How to Treat it?
MEDICATION - Medication is usually not necessary for this disorder. However might be helpful for increasing confidence levels.
-If hospitalization is necessary: Intravenous fluids may be prescribed. During recovery, vitamin and mineral supplements will be necessary until signs of deficiency disappear and normal eating patterns are established.
- -For outpatient therapy: Supervision and regulation of eating habits. A food diary may be maintained. Feared foods will be reintroduced.
THERAPY- CBT, counseling, NLP are effective techniques