Eating Disorders Essay

2145 words - 9 pages

Eating disorders have been a growing problem in not only America but also in other Western countries. The three main eating disorders are Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Binge Eating Disorder (BED). There are other eating disorders yet they have similar characteristics to the three disorders stated above. Many people believe the cause of these disorders is modeling and its extremely skinny and unhealthy models. However, there are other causes that play an important role. One’s genetics and environment plays a vital role in whether one is susceptible. Eating disorders, though not well known, have shocking statistics.
Ten million Americans have eating disorders (Natenshon). Eighty-seven percent of these Americans are under the age of twenty (Natenshon). People notice that mostly young actresses are diagnosed with anorexia. Sadly, the problem is not just with teenagers. The average age eating disorders are diagnosed in America is now nine to twelve years old (Natenshon). No one suspects such young children to suffer with these gigantic disorders, yet it is starting younger and younger with each passing generation. The US Department of Health and Human Services reported that by the time girls reach the eighth grade, fifty percent of them had been on a diet, which has been proven to lead to a higher risk of obesity, and ten percent had done self-induced vomiting (Natenshon). Many people do not suspect that pre-teens, or even teens, can commit such atrocities to their own bodies yet these statistics show otherwise. Another misconception is that only women develop eating disorders. Although predominately female, during the past decade, the number of males with eating disorders has doubled (Natenshon). The number of people with eating disorders is three times more than the number of people with AIDS (Natenshon). Eating disorders seem to be unsuspecting killers, killing about ten percent of all their victims (Natenshon). People, however, do not know how to either identify eating disorders before it becomes too late or understand eating disorders.
Anorexia is known as the “rich girl’s” disease. Anorexia was defined in the 1870s since it started to be noticed among rich adolescent women (Myers 478). Anorexia nervosa is defined as when a normal-weight person diets and becomes at least 15 percent or more underweight yet still feels fat so continues to starve himself or herself (Myers 479). Starting as the beginning of a weight-loss diet, anorexia is still hard to identify. To enter a clinic with anorexia, one must have three different aspects: physical harm, strict behavior, and harmful emotions (Natenshon). Anorexics see weight-loss as a way to happiness. Children, as young as five years, old have been diagnosed with anorexia (Natenshon). Anorexia is curable with extensive therapy for the underlying emotional issues (Natenshon). Unfortunately, half of the people with anorexia have bulimia nervosa (Myers 478). Anorexia is believed to occur only...

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