Anorexia

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Anorexia can develop in a person irrespective of their gender, age, socioeconomic status, religion, or culture. One of the defining characteristics of anorexia is self-starvation to the point that health and overall well-being is severely compromised. Individuals with anorexia are typically preoccupied with food and body and may experience feelings of guilt and fear with eating. Anorexia can impact a person in multiple ways, including their physical body, emotional state, relationship development and maintenance, work, career, and more. At Aloria we approach our care by addressing all of the factors at play in a potential client’s daily experience.

Signs and Symptoms of Anorexia

In many situations, it may not always be apparent that a person with anorexia is struggling with this eating disorder. There are various signs and symptoms that may be revealed if a person is dealing with anorexia. Awareness of the following signs and symptoms may help with early recognition and identification of this eating disorder.

A person dealing with anorexia may exhibit the following signs:

  • Repeatedly skipping meals and/or fasting
  • Cooking elaborate meals for others but refusing to eat
  • Sudden, unexplained weight loss
  • Preoccupation with calories, food, cooking, and recipes
  • Extreme anxiety and/or fear about weight gain
  • Food rituals when eating, such as cutting food into small pieces, eating only certain foods, or eating foods in a particular pattern
  • Avoidance of social situations that involve food
  • Repeated weighing and/or body checking
  • Obsession of body size and shape
  • Severely distorted perception of one’s body and self-image
  • Denial of hunger, even after prolonged periods of not eating

Engaging in behaviors related to anorexia may result in the following symptoms, which can vary depending on the severity of the disease:

  • Digestive discomforts, including bloating, nausea, and/or constipation
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Lack of emotion and/or flat mood
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Fatigue
  • Intolerance of cold
  • Loss of bone calcium (osteopenia or osteoporosis)
  • Cardiovascular complications, including irregular heart rhythms, low blood pressure, or heart attacks
  • Brain damage
  • Amenorrhea (absence of menstruation in women)
  • Infertility
  • Brain damage