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People with anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa tend to be perfectionists with low self-esteem and are extremely critical of themselves and their bodies.They usually “feel fat” and see themselves as overweight, sometimes even despite life-threatening semi-starvation (or malnutrition).
Individuals with anorexia often have a distorted body image.
Those with anorexia view themselves as fat or bulky in certain areas and have an intense fear of gaining weight or becoming fat.
People with anorexia may repeatedly check their body weight and engage in techniques to control their weight, such as intense and compulsive exercise or abuse of laxatives, enemas, and diuretics.
Girls with anorexia often experience a delayed onset of their first menstrual period or amenorrhea (absence of menstrual periods).
Eating disorders frequently co-occur with other psychiatric disorders, such as depression, substance abuse, anxiety disorders, and borderline personality disorder.
In addition, people who suffer from eating disorders can experience a wide range of physical health complications, such as loss of bone mineral density, anemia, heart conditions, and kidney failure, which can, in some cases, lead to death.These measures begin to rebuild physical well-being and healthy eating practices. Anorexia Nervosa is an eating disorder manifested when a person refuses to eat an adequate amount of food or is unable to maintain the minimal weight for a person's body mass index.The process of restricting becomes a preoccupation and is often obsessive in nature.They may avoid what they perceive as high caloric food and meals, picking out a few foods and eating only these in small quantities, or carefully weighing and portioning food.For young adults, this may involve leaving home for college.For older women, similar life transitions—such as returning to work after raising a family, finding a new job, or separation and divorce—can precipitate symptoms of an eating disorder.Studies on the basic biology of appetite control and its alteration by prolonged overeating or starvation have uncovered enormous complexity; in time, their findings may lead to new pharmacologic treatments for eating disorders.Scientists suspect that multiple genes may interact with environmental and other factors to increase the risk of developing these illnesses.The first step in treating anorexia nervosa is to assist patients with regaining weight to a healthy level; for patients with bulimia nervosa interrupting the binge-purge cycle is key.For patients with binge eating disorder it is important to help them interrupt and stop binges.