Eating Disorder In Egypt Essay

798 words - 4 pages

Our judgmental eyes could easily spot severe eating disorders like Anorexia or Bulimia Nervosa. However, can we pinpoint other less severe disordered eating and understand the calamity of its emotional dangers on people? Disordered eating is mostly common in young girls who are obsessed with weight, calories, diet and size. As young children, most of the girls grow up in a culture where being thin in sexy and being a little chubby or fat is a shame. As girls grow up to become teenagers, this idea is emphasized as they see their favorite female actors and singers with their “perfect” body. This problem is common in the United States, where 1 in 5 women struggle with an eating disorder or disordered eating. However, this idea seems to have increased in our Egyptian culture lately. The Egyptian Medical Association for the Study of Obesity estimated that “15 percent of young Egyptian children are obese--a notable increase from only 6 percent in 1990”. Young Egyptian females now either starve themselves or eat in an uncontrollable way to simply fill the void. Extreme thinness has become a social and cultural ideal, and women partially define themselves by how physically attractive they are. The problem is not only that beauty pressures lead to eating disorders, but also the reckless way our country and culture handles the problem.
As a teenager, I have seen a lot of cases of disordered eating at my school. There is that thin girl who is always on diet and another girl who is always eating for no reason. Both cases have internal struggles with self-esteem and lack the ability to face the problem and find an appropriate solution for it. In addition, both cases dislike their bodies and size. They don’t see themselves as beautiful creatures; rather they see themselves as an embarrassment. These cases are not severe; however, they should at least receive help from a professional health doctor. Dr. George Drinka, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, wrote in her new book “When the Media Is the Parent, “This problem is a cultural disaster staring us in the face”.
An article in the Ahram Weekly stated that 500 girls between the age 13 and 18 were chosen from seven different schools. After interviewing those girls, it was discovered that "1.6 per cent of the population were bulimic; 0.5 per cent had anorexia; 9.7 per cent had atypical cases of anorexia or bulimia; and over 50 per...

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