Ways to Define Eating Disorders


There are many ways to define eating disorder. The term caters to both spectrums of unhealthy diet practices and choices. Individuals who have eating disorders are more generally classified as having a mental disorder wherein the self is being conditioned to react to certain significant events than just being physically unable to ingest food.

It Starts With Satiety

Any person who becomes hungry feels discomfort and uneasiness, and one of the most satisfying forms of comfort may be attributed to the satiety brought about by a full stomach. However, some people who have had different experiences resort to seeking comfort through the same method even when the reaction required for such stimuli may be addressed by other coping mechanisms.

Eating disorders in this regard becomes the sole coping mechanism for these individuals who have fixed their thoughts on the notion that by eating, or by not eating would they find peace of mind and justification for their actions.

Different Causes, Different Possibilities

There are eating disorders that are brought about by physical anomalies wherein reabsorption of nutrients is not sufficient, and that it results to malnourishment. However, the context in this regard would describe the psychological characteristics.

Psychological Dilemma

It may be viewed as a psychologically influenced disease in which the person has either an extreme aversion or affinity to food, therefore producing unhealthy outcomes. Psychiatrists and psychologists have linked the occurrence of eating disorders to people’s respective pasts, or an immediate reaction to a big event of which practice may develop into a long term manifestation.

The Past Influence On The Present Practice

It is usually said that people who had a bad experience in the past, more specifically being deprived of attention and love resort to an overeating complex. This may be attributed to the psychological view that eating in abundance gives a false self comfort of being taken care of. This overeating may be considered as a withdrawal from the unpleasant experience as the individual creates an altered state of self comfort and concern.

On the other hand, there are cases wherein too much of unpleasant moments have transformed the individual to a state of helplessness, and depletion of one’s self esteem. From here, the person may resort to an overactive reaction to eating to please the self through other’s approval. Individuals who are trapped in this predicament usually develop an aversion to eating to be able to maintain a socially accepted body figure.

The influence of the media and peers also highly contribute to a person’s view on eating. A relatively fat person constantly laughed at and ridiculed may either develop a passive, withdrawal reaction and increase eating to further compensate the depression brought upon by others or a proactive stand wherein an over reaction of not ingesting food on purpose is practiced to attain a desirable figure.

Anorexia Nervosa

People who have these eating disorders are usually classified into three main categories. There are those diagnosed with anorexia nervosa, whose main characteristics involve purposely starving one’s self just to prevent having a distorted view of body image. This is the psychological term used for anorexia, the latter being merely a physical condition. People suffering from this mental disorder may be seen as being overly thin and undernourished individuals who are at risk of starving to death.

Persons who have this disease would rather not eat at all and would always find satisfaction that their hunger and extremely thin bodies justify their fears of not being ridiculed by society.

Bulimia Nervosa

This characteristic is diagnosed to people who eat a lot during a single meal and undergoes a guilty feeling of having ingested too much, and later on induces vomiting just to expel the food which has already started to be digested already. The succeeding event of vomiting would justify and give a sense of satisfaction that they would not have to get fat.

This type of individuals may also develop deviant attitude as they may resort to low will power of giving in to temptation and later on perform an act of goodwill just to justify their previous wrong doing.

Binge Eating

This is a trait most commonly found in people who have lived a deprived past. In this state, any lack of self sufficiency and other insecurities are directed towards eating, with a notion that through excessive ingestion of food would there be self sufficiency. The logical flow of thinking for people in this state ends with the thought that having an excessive meal compensates for the other aspects lacking in their lives.

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