Aug 23

Diet Pill Addiction

Diet Pill Addiction

Diet pills are any type of “medication” or supplement that is marketed to control or reduce weight. There are numerous diet pills that have been produced and promoted for weight loss but only one is actually approved by the FDA for long term use. Diet pills always claim to achieve weight loss by increasing the metabolism, altering appetite levels, or interrupting the normal rate of absorption when it comes to fat and/or calories. The majority of diet pills can be purchased at pharmacies, over the counter without a prescription. This is especially dangerous because not only are the diet pills not approved by the FDA but they also can be bought by minors. Diet pills usually contain large amounts of addictive substances such as ephedrine, caffeine, or herbal stimulants which can have severe side effects. This is especially true if the individual taking the diet pills develops a diet pill addiction.

A diet pill addiction can develop at any time throughout an individual’s lifetime. This means that all age groups are vulnerable to a diet pill addiction. The statistics about diet pill addiction are helpful in realizing and understanding fully, the fragility of a diet pill addiction and how to improve the treatment of it.

  • A study from the University of Minnesota’s “Project EAT (Eating Among Teens) found that high school-aged females’ use of diet pills nearly doubled from 7.5 to 14.2 percent.  By the ages of 19 and 20, 20 percent of females surveyed used diet pills.
  • Abuse of diet pills by individuals with eating disorders is well-documented clinically, with prevalence estimates reported as high as 50%.
  • According to a study published in Eating Behaviors, individuals with eating disorders associated with vomiting and other purging behaviors are more likely to use diet pills.

What is the cause of a diet pill addiction?

Many things can cause a diet pill addiction. Typically a diet pill addiction begins with the want for a a temporary or quick fix for weight loss. Individuals who use diet pills under a doctor’s care with a prescription may have an actual need for the drug. However, when diet pills are just used recreationally or for non-medical purposes, it becomes a diet pill addiction. Men and women alike, who struggle with body image, even at a normal weight may feel inclined to use diet pills as a method of controlling their weight or losing weight. Body image dysmorphia or the inability to see one’s body clearly can be one of the biggest causes of a diet pill addiction. For example, someone who is suffering from anorexia nervosa is very likely to have a diet pill addiction. Feeling the necessity or want to take diet pills stem from deeper and underlying issues which are all usually connected.

Signs of a diet pill addiction

Certain signs and symptoms will be evident if you or a loved one is suffering with a diet pill addiction.  Diet pill effects can range in severity and can impact a man or woman physically, psychologically, and socially.

  • Chest pain
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Mood swings
  • Nausea
  • Tremors
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Stomach pain
  • Rapid respiratory rate
  • Severe headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Liver/Kidney damage
  • Chronic mood swings
  • Blackouts
  • Memory loss

Someone with a diet pill addiction may also deal with the side effects physically, psychologically, and socially. For instance, unstable weight, headaches, tightness in chest, heart palpitations, dizziness, stroke, and mood swings, depression, and low self-esteem as well as, increased isolation, difficulty maintaining healthy relationships, and avoidance of social encounters.

 

Aug 16

Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified

Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified

Eating disorders, specifically anorexia and bulimia, are characterized by extreme emotions, attitudes, and behaviors surrounding weight and food issues. They are serious disorders and can have life threatening consequences. This is also the case for the category of eating disorders known as eating disorders not otherwise specified (ENDOS). These eating disorders can include a combination of signs and symptoms that are pretty typical for someone who has anorexia or bulimia.

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia Nervosa is characterized by emaciation, a never ending pursuit to try and be thin and a total unwillingness to stay at a healthy weight. There is also a distortion of body image and an intense fear of gaining weight. Anorexia Nervosa is also characterized by a lack of menstruation among girls and women. The eating behavior is extremely disturbed. Some people with anorexia will try to lose weight by dieting and exercising obsessively. Other people with anorexia will induce vomiting, misuse laxatives, diuretics, or enemas.

• Deliberate self-starvation with weight loss

• Intense, persistent fear of gaining weight

• Refusal to eat or highly restrictive eating

• Continuous dieting

• Excessive facial/body hair because of inadequate protein in the diet

• Compulsive exercise

• Abnormal weight loss

• Sensitivity to cold

• Absent or irregular menstruation

• Hair loss

Bulimia Nervosa

Someone with bulimia nervosa will have regular moments of overeating which are always followed by a feeling of guilt, which can then lead to extreme crash dieting, doing lots of exercise and purging (self-induced vomiting.)

  • Binge-eating “repeatedly” – eating much more than most people normally do, together with a feeling that they can’t stop or control their eating
  • Repeatedly and inappropriately compensating for the over-eating, such as over-medicating with laxatives, fasting, exercising to exhaustion, or making themselves vomit
  • Frequent dieting
  • Been doing these two things (binge-eating and inappropriately compensating) repeatedly at least twice a week for the last 3 months
  • Overly judging themselves in terms of the weight and shape of their bodies

Eating disorders not otherwise specified

These are the most common examples of eating disorders not otherwise specified but every person experiencing eating disorders not otherwise specified may have varying symptoms.

  • Menstruation is still happening despite meeting all the criteria for either bulimia nervosa or anorexia nervosa.
  • All conditions are present to qualify for anorexia nervosa except for the individual’s current weight is in the normal range or above.
  • Purging or other compensatory behaviors are not occurring at a frequency less than the strict criteria for bulimia nervosa
  • Purging without binging which is sometimes known as purging disorder
  • Chewing and spitting out large amounts of food but not swallowing

An eating disorder not otherwise specified is simply put an eating disorder that meets all the criteria except for one or two things. Mainly all of the above have one thing in common and that is an obsessive preoccupation with weight to the point that affects the present day moment and the ability to enjoy life while being around friends, family, at work etc. A person with ENDOS or any other eating disorder will constantly be concerned about their weight and food.

Jul 22

How to Control Binge Eating

How to Control Binge Eating

What is Binge Eating?

Binge-eating disorder is a serious eating disorder in which you frequently consume unusually large amounts of food. Almost everyone overeats on occasion, such as having seconds or thirds of a holiday meal. But for some people, overeating crosses the line to binge-eating disorder and it becomes a regular occurrence, and is usually done in secret.

When you have binge-eating disorder, you may be deeply embarrassed about gorging and vow to stop. But you feel such a compulsion that you can’t resist the urges and continue binge eating. If you have binge-eating disorder, treatment can help.

Causes of Binge Eating

The causes of binge-eating disorder are unknown. But family history, biological factors, long-term dieting and psychological issues, such as those resulting from childhood trauma and/or abuse, increase your risk. Many studies have documented a link between childhood abuse and later obesity. The reasoning for this is possibly because stress may cause one to overeat high-sugar and high-fat “comfort” foods in an uncontrolled way.Women who have experienced physical or sexual childhood abuse before the age of 18 are almost twice as likely to have a food addiction in the middle of adulthood in comparison with women without a history of childhood abuse. The likelihood of a food addiction is also increased further for women who have experienced both physical and sexual childhood abuse. The prevalence of afood addiction varies from six percent in women without a history of physical or sexual childhood abuse to sixteen percent among women who do have a history of both severe physical and sexual childhood abuse.

How to Control Binge Eating

Traditional Treatments:

Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy, whether in individual or group sessions, can help teach you how to exchange unhealthy habits for healthy ones and reduce bingeing episodes.

Medications

There’s no medication specifically designed to treat binge-eating disorder. But, several types of medication may help reduce symptoms, especially when combined with psychotherapy.

 

Other Ways to Control Binge Eating

Lifestyle and home remedies

  • Stick to your treatment. Don’t skip therapy sessions.
  • Avoid dieting. Trying to diet can trigger more binge episodes, leading to a vicious cycle that’s hard to break.
  • Eat breakfast. Many people with binge-eating disorder skip breakfast. But, if you eat breakfast, you may be less prone to eating higher calorie meals later in the day.
  • Don’t stock up. Keep less food in your home than you normally do. That may mean more-frequent trips to the grocery store, but it may also take away the temptation binge eating.
  • Get the right nutrients. Just because you may be eating a lot during binges doesn’t mean you’re eating the kinds of food that supply all of your essential nutrients. Talk to your doctor about vitamin and mineral supplements.
  • Stay connected. Don’t isolate yourself from caring family members and friends who want to see you get healthy.
  • Get active. Ask your health care provider what kind of physical activity is appropriate for you, especially if you have health problems related to being overweight.

 

Alternative Medicine to Treat Binge Eating

  • Massage and therapeutic touch
  • Mind-body therapies
  • Acupuncture

 

Coping and Support to Deal with Binge Eating

  • Ease up on yourself. Don’t buy into your own self-criticism.
  • Identify situations that may trigger your binge eating.
  • Look for positive role models who can help lift your self-esteem, even if they’re not easy to find.
  • Try to find a confidant you can talk to about what’s going on. Together, you may be able to come up with some treatment options.
  • Try to find someone who can be your partner in the battle against binge eating — someone you can call on for support instead of bingeing.
  • Find healthy ways to nurture yourself by doing something just for fun or to relax, such as yoga, meditation or simply a walk.
  • Consider journaling about your feelings and behaviors.

 

Support for binge eating can also come from a 12 Step fellowship. There are meetings for Overeaters Anonymous. The 12 Step program can be helpful in learning how to cope with your food addiction and binge eating and also in shaping a new, healthy lifestyle. If you find yourself struggling to cope, there are treatment programs that treat eating disorders such as binge eating.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.mayoclinic.com

www.wikipedia.org

http://womenstreatmentcenter.com

Jun 18

Pro Ana and Pro Mia

Pro Ana and Pro Mia

One of the greatest advantages of the Internet today is that it has the ability to bring people who think alike together to one place for support and encouragement of their lifestyles and hobbies. In some cases, these may not be lifestyles or hobbies that are healthy or even socially acceptable such as anorexia and bulimia. These sites on the Internet for eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia go by the shortened terms that let its users know that they are in support of the behavior; these names are pro ana (pro anorexia) and pro mia (pro bulimia).

What does pro ana and pro mia mean?

  • Pro-ana stands for pro-anorexia
  • Pro-mia stands for pro-bulimia.
  • “Pro” does not mean, “supports the promotion of”.
  • Most disclaimers on the sites contain something along the lines of “If you do not have an eating disorder then it is better for you if you do not develop one”, although the more hard-line sites often use challenging language, such as “If you can’t handle it, leave”.
  • Pro-ana sites are for those who are already anorexics, who want to be “triggered” and are looking for advice, tips and support from fellow anorexics to help them become “better” anorexics.
  • “Pro-ana” symbolizes the choice not to go into recovery; if you are pro-ana then by definition you have chosen to live wholeheartedly as an anorexic, at least for the time being.

How did pro ana and pro mia sites start?

In the early 2000’s with the rise of the Internet, pro ana and pro mia sites became very popular, very quickly but that meant they also became very visible to not only those who wanted to find them. That is when the pro ana and pro mia sites made their debut in both Time Magazine and on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Soon after pro ana and pro mia sites made themselves known many site hosts such as Yahoo began to shut down existing pro ana and pro mia sites and they banned any new sites.

Pro ana and pro mia sites today

Now days pro ana and pro mia sites are hard to find but they still exist. Most pro ana and pro mia sites feature tips for very low calorie eating, tricks for hiding extreme weight loss and ways to avoid being detected. Many pro ana and pro mia sites also have what is called “thinspiration” on them. “Thinspiration” is photos of very thin women; most of whom are celebrities such as Lindsay Lohan, Victoria’s Secret Models or Kate Moss.

Pro ana and pro mia sites are very dangerous. Not only can pro ana and pro mia sites push someone who may be on the verge of an eating disorder into one but the sites also can undermine anyone who is in recovery from an eating disorder.

Luckily many of the pro ana and pro mia sites today have made a transition from being pro eating disorder to pro recovery.

The pro ana and pro mia sites that are still defending their existence state that anorexia and bulimia are lifestyle choices rather than dangerous mental health conditions that can end up killing someone.

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pro-ana

http://www.sirc.org/articles/totally_in_control2.shtml

 

Oct 05

Eating Disorder Therapy for Women

Eating Disorder Therapy for Women

Eating Disorder Therapy for Women

Eating disorders are serious behavior problems. They include:

  • Anorexia nervosa, in which you become too thin, but you don’t eat      enough because you think you are fat
  • Bulimia nervosa, involving periods of overeating followed by purging,      sometimes through self-induced vomiting or using laxatives
  • Binge-eating, which is out-of-control eating

Women are more likely than men to have eating disorders. They usually start in the teenage years and often occur along with depression, anxiety disorders and substance abuse.

Eating disorders can cause heart and kidney problems and even death. Getting help early is important. Therapy for eating disorders involves monitoring, mental health therapy, nutritional counseling and sometimes medicines.

Psychological counseling (psychotherapy) is generally the most important eating disorder therapy for women. It involves seeing a psychologist, psychiatrist or other mental health counselor on a regular basis. There are different types of eating disorder therapy for women:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of counseling is a short-term, structured eating disorder therapy that helps you address the thoughts, feelings and behaviors related to your eating disorder. It can help you learn to recognize and change distorted thoughts that lead to eating disorder behaviors.
  • Interpersonal psychotherapy. Another short-term treatment, interpersonal psychotherapy focuses on resolving relationship issues that contribute to your eating disorder. This type of treatment may be especially helpful if you have depression along with an eating disorder.
  • Family-based therapy. With family-based therapy, family members attend counseling sessions. This type of therapy can be especially useful for parents learning how to help a teen with an eating disorder.
  • Group cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of eating disorder therapy for women involves meeting with a psychologist or other mental health provider along with others who are diagnosed with an eating disorder. It can help you address thoughts, feelings and behaviors related to your eating disorder, learn skills to manage eating disorder symptoms, and regain healthy eating patterns.

Eating disorder therapy may involve a combination of types of counseling. Your psychologist or counselor may ask you to do homework, such as keep a food journal to review in counseling sessions, and identify triggers that cause you to binge, purge or do other unhealthy eating behavior.

Dietitians and other professionals involved in your eating disorder therapy can help you better understand your eating disorder and help you develop a plan to maintain healthy eating habits. Goals of nutrition education eating disorder therapy generally include:

  • Education about how nutrition affects your body
  • Meal planning
  • Establishing regular eating patterns — generally, three meals a day with regular snacks
  • Taking steps to avoid dieting

Nutrition education may involve cognitive behavioral therapy techniques to help you recognize faulty beliefs and thought patterns and understand how your eating disorder causes nutrition issues and physical problems.

Medications may help you follow your eating disorder therapy plan. They’re most effective when combined with psychological counseling. Antidepressants are the most common medications used to treat eating disorders, but depending on the situation, other medications are sometimes prescribed. You may also need to take medications for physical health problems caused by your eating disorder.

There is multiple different eating disorder therapies for women to help with any kind of eating issues you may have. If it gets serious enough you may want to look into attending an inpatient rehabilitation center for eating disorders. Either way eating disorder therapy for women can truly help.