Archive for June, 2007

Guide To Understanding Anorexia Part 1/2

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007

What is Anorexia?

Anorexia Nervosa, often just called Anorexia, is an eating
disorder wherein an individual has a distorted body image. This
misperception leads to an avoidance of food and severely
restricted caloric consumption. Low body weight and an intense
fear of gaining weight are characteristic traits. Anorexia is a
psychophysiological disorder which, if left untreated, can
eventually lead to death.

Who might be at risk of developing Anorexia?

Anyone can develop an eating disorder, however there are
certain individuals who seem to have an increased risk. Women
are, of course, more likely to develop an eating disorder than
are men. That said, the rates of Anorexia Nervosa in men is
increasing somewhat. More research is needed to determine the
cause of eating disorders, however those at risk may include
high strung individuals with a stringent set of ideals. People
who exhibit perfectionism in their pursuits both academically
and extracurricular. Someone with a family history of obesity.
An individual prone to dieting on a regular basis. A history
of physical or sexual abuse. Someone who has been subject to
bullying and/or teasing. Elite athletes who believe their
success depends on maintaining and achieving a certain ideal
weight. Aspiring to a profession which focuses on weight and
appearance (dancers, models, actresses, etc.) Someone who
struggles with depression or anxiety. A tendency toward
addictive behaviors, perhaps manifest in alcohol or substance

What are the signs and symptoms of Anorexia?

The symptoms of Anorexia can be easy to hide, initially, but to
a concerned and watchful parent they should become relatively
easy to spot, particularly as the disorder progresses. Keep in
mind, however, that generally the person suffering from the
eating disorder will feel guilt and shame and will try to
prevent anyone from noticing their struggles. Warning signs may
●A refusal to eat certain foods. This may be in the form
of cutting out an entire food group, i.e. carbohydrates, sugar,
fat. It may also be just individual foods like no longer eating
beef or refusing to eat bread.
●Always being `on a diet’. This can become a common
excuse for avoiding food and social situations where food may
be served. It is so common for young women, in particular, to
be on a diet that until the weight loss becomes excessive this
may not be considered a problem.
●Strange eating patterns. Cutting up food into tiny
pieces, chewing each bite a certain number of times, eating
only one food at a time, refusing to let foods touch, pushing
food around the plate.
●Excessive exercise. Anything more than an hour per day
of high intensity exercise would be considered excessive. Many
elite athletes do exercise more than this, but for the average
young woman this could be cause for concern. Current
recommendations are 2-3 days per week of weight bearing
exercise with 8-12 repetitions of the exercise per body part.
3-5 days of cardiorespiratory training for 20-60 minutes per
session. 2-3 days per week of flexibility training.
●Wearing baggy clothes to hide her figure. This could be
because the individual feels fat and wants to hide her supposed
horrible figure. It could also be an attempt to hide the
excessive weight loss from not eating. Additionally, sometimes
there is a desire to avoid growing up and baggy clothing can
hide the fact that a womanly figure is emerging.
●Preoccupation with food. Wanting specific information
on nutritional values of foods, knowing the exact fat and
calorie content of foods, talking about and thinking about food
all of the time.
●Weight loss. This is a relatively obvious sign, however
initially the weight loss may be seen as a good thing. If the
young woman was somewhat overweight, the initial weight loss
may be complimented. This acknowledgment and attention may
feed the desire to lose even more weight. Anorexics typically
can get down to less than 85% of normal height and weight for
●Sensitivity to cold. Loss of body fat leaves the body
sensitive to temperature and feeling cold when everyone around
is comfortable.
●Labeling foods `good’ `bad’ etc. Giving a moral
connotation to the foods available and feeling guilty for
eating `bad’ foods. Eventually even healthy foods can be
designated as `bad’ because of a high calorie content. Good
examples of this would be nuts and avocado.
●Dizziness or lightheadedness. Drop in blood pressure,
dehydration, iron deficiency anemia. All can lead to dizziness
and lightheadedness. This may be particularly sensitive to
change in position.
●Frequent headaches.
●Avoidance of social situations which may involve food.
As mentioned above, the excuse that she is “on a diet” may be
used to avoid social situations. People who have Anorexia
don’t necessarily want people watching them eat. This may be
because they don’t want people analyzing what, if anything,
they are eating. Additionally, it could just be a way of
avoiding the temptation of food. It is a common misperception
that Anorexics don’t get hungry. This is not the case. They do
feel hunger, but their fear of weight gain and desire to be `in
control’ of their appetite is stronger than their hunger.
●Absence of menstrual periods (amenorrhea). Strict
dieting and excessive exercise can lead to a disruption in the
flow of hormones. Consequently, the body doesn’t produce
enough estrogen and progesterone. Ovulation is suppressed and
menstruation stops.
●Anxiety and/or depression. This is a vicious cycle in
regards to eating disorders. Feelings of anxiety, depression,
and low self worth can lead to Anorexia. The physical and
mental effects of the Anorexia can lead to even more depression
and anxiety. The eating disorder and depression continue to
feed off of each other, each aggravating the other.
●Eating rituals such as only using a certain cup to drink
out of or always insisting on a certain fork. These are small
methods of exerting control over the environment where food is
●Increased interest in food, cooking, collecting cook
books etc. Although someone with Anorexia will avoid eating,
the hunger causes a huge interest in food. Being around food
and providing food for others become almost an obsession as the
body fights for the nutrients it needs but is being deprived of.

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Ignorance And Lack Of Knowledge Can Lead To Dog Anorexia

Monday, June 25th, 2007

When a dog refuses to eat or eats only a portion of the dog
food he needs or what he usually eats every day will produce an
imbalance in his dog nutrition. The term Anorexia is used to
describe the condition when a dog refuses to eat. Many dog
owners take their dog’s eating for granted until the dog
actually stops eating. A dog’s eating habits are normally
controlled by hunger, appetite, and the satisfaction of these
two. This control may be abnormally affected by emotions,
sensations, or the taste of the dog food.

Another thing that causes a disturbance of the dog’s natural
eating behavior is mechanical interruption. Broken jaws, a fish
hook in the tongue or a rubber ball stuck in the throat are
typical examples of mechanical anorexia. A lot of dog owners
think that it is normal for all dogs to miss a meal and that a
missed meal is not something to be concerned about. However, a
healthy dog is always hungry at meal time, just as a healthy
person is. Any time a dog refuses to eathisn dog food, it is a
signal to you that something is not right. If the dog refuses
two meals in a row, you can be certain that there is something
wrong, either with your dog or with his dog food.

Obviously with the lack of dog nutrition, a dog gradually
losses weight once he stops eating. A 20 lb Beagle will lose
0.4 pound (six and one-half ounces) each day he refuses to eat.
This weight loss occurs because the dog is breaking down and
using up his own body. Since there is no dog nutrition coming
in, a dog with anorexia must literally burn itself up in order
to obtain the energy and nutrients needed for his essential
life functions. When extra demands from disease are piled on
those suffering from anorexia, the burn-up is even faster. That
Beagle cannot afford to lose =BD lb of his body weight every day
for very long!

Included within the weight lost will be fats, carbohydrates and
protein. The most important loss to a dog is protein. By the end
of only two days of anorexia, that 20 lb Beagle will already
have lost about 3% of his total body protein. This becomes
increasingly important if one considers that protein is
essential not only for normal metabolism but for wound healing,
tissue repair and combating infections. Actions to replace the
intake of anorectic dogs should be implemented immediately.
Unwillingness or failure to overcome the deficiencies of
calories and nutrients created by anorexia can mean the
difference between recovery and death during an illness.

The same dog food the dog was eating before anorexia is
suitable, as long as the cause of the anorexia does not make it
unsuitable. Because dogs become inactive with anorexia, their
calorie need is somewhat less than for most dogs. If they have
a fever, however, this rapidly increases their caloric

Dogs with anorexia must be force-fed either by spoon feeding or
by intragastric intubation. This type of dog food diet should be
fed only long enough to get a dog back to eating satisfactorily
on his own and should never become a substitute for actually
determining the cause of the anorexia or for overcoming that

About The Author: John Mailer has written many articles about
dogs and puppies and how to train them.His main business is as
an internet marketer.

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