Free Essay Example: Eating Disorders

Published: 2023-01-30
Free Essay Example: Eating Disorders
Type of paper:  Research paper
Categories:  Food Nutrition Human behavior Psychological disorder
Pages: 6
Wordcount: 1395 words
12 min read

We are living in a strange world. A world where almost everyone wants to be skinny to be beautiful. The constant popping up of new trendy diets virtually any time. These trendy diets promise weight loss, and with them, it might seem that individuals can lose weight fast and with less effort. The challenge with these trendy diets is that they are ineffective, and most of them are dangerous to people's health, both in the short and long term. Today, there exist many products on the market. Besides, several marketing campaigns have been designed to persuade individuals to give such products a try from diet pills to supplements. The problem is for those who are enthusiastic about giving them an attempt to lose weight, which may start as a way of losing a few pounds may quickly turn out into an eating disorder.

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Thesis statement: there exist different types of eating disorders, and they pose severe effects on individuals' health.

Definition of Eating Disorders

What are feeding disorders? These are severe conditions that are related to unhealthy eating habits and can negatively affect one's overall health - either physically or emotionally. They can affect one's psychological well - being (Klump, Bulik, Kaye, Treasure & Tyson, 2009). Eating disorders are severe and can cause health challenges for individuals. They can cause severe problems for one's eating behaviors.

Symptoms of Eating Disorders

Eating disorders have different signs and symptoms. A person suffering from eating disorders may show different signs and symptoms. Among them include;

Extreme concern with one's body size; individuals with eating disorders are always concerned with their body physique (Eisenberg, Nicklett, Roeder & Kirz, 2011). They always check their body shapes and sizes, an indicator that they are psychologically concerned.

Irregularities in menstrual; women, may exhibit signs of missing their periods or only having their menstrual periods while on hormonal contraceptives. Dizziness; one also experiences dizziness, especially if one stands for long hours. Some people may experience swelling around salivary gland areas. An individual can also experience impaired immune functioning. One can also show signs of fluctuations in body weight. Psychologically, individuals with eating disorders frequently check themselves in the mirror for perceived flaws in body appearance. Such individuals may also refuse to eat certain foods, for instance, carbohydrates.

Medical Complications from Eating Disorders

When most people think of eating disorders like Nervosa, they mostly think of people struggling with impaired body image, excessive weight loss, and long term food restriction. However, those are just prominent symptoms and signs of eating disorders. The truth is that eating disorders can also lead to potential medical complications that one may not be aware of. Some of the medical complications that individuals with eating disorders are exposed to include;

Anemia; anemia is a disease characterized to deficiency of red blood cells in the bloodstream. Red blood cell produces hemoglobin protein that enables it to transport oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body and Carbon dioxide to the lungs for exhalation. The human body needs folic acid and iron (among other minerals) to manufacture red blood cells and hemoglobin. Lack of those nutrients leads to anemia. This is mainly experienced by people with eating disorders (Rome & Ammerman, 2003). To such people, the body lacks the necessary ingredients it requires, and they experience inadequate oxygen transport to the body parts. Anemia, caused by eating disorders, can result from paling skin, fatigue, and dizziness.

Constipation; constipation entails either experiencing a challenge or lack of ability to make a bowel movement for an extended period. Typically, if there are no movements for bowels after four days, medical intervention may be required. Individuals suffering from eating disorders such as anorexia often experience constipation due to insufficient food and fluid intake in the body. Lack of enough food, especially fiber and inadequate fluid intake leads to decrease gastric motility, making intestines to struggle to push food through digestive systems and generate a bowel movement. Such individuals are likely to experience uncomfortable bloat.

Dehydration; many people think of dehydration as a condition that results from not taking enough fluid or a condition that happens when one loses too much water. While this is true, a more significant percentage of dehydration is caused by eating disorders. When an individual restricts their food intake, they become susceptible to dehydration.

Orthostatic hypotension (OH); this is another medical complication that results from eating disorders. Those with an eating disorder experiences a drop in blood pressure. It is most common in people suffering from anorexia. Such individuals take little or no fluid, which in turn leads to dehydration, which causes low blood pressure.

Biological and Sociological Factors for Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are complex, and they affect all kinds of individuals. Risk factor for eating disorders involves both biological and social issues. Biological factors include;

Having a close family member with an eating disorder; research has shown that having a first degree relative, such as a sibling with an eating disorder can increase one's chances of developing an eating disorder.

History of dieting; also, history of dieting of an individual and other weight control mechanisms can increase an individual's chances of developing feeding disorder such as binge eating (Collier & Treasure, 2004).

Insulin-dependent diabetes; individuals diagnosed with type one diabetes have are at high risk of developing eating disorders.

Social factors that may lead to social disorders include;

Weight stigma; some people believe that being thin and medium in size is better. This message has been spread across social media platforms (Collier & Treasure, 2004). It has led to body dissatisfaction among many people, and this too can lead to an eating disorder. Weight stigma is a stereotyping based on an individual's weight and has become pervasive in society.

Teasing; people who are always teased or bullied about their body weight and eating habits can be at high chances of developing feeding disorders. They feel ashamed of their weights and eventually develop ways to reduce or increase their weight through diet and food restriction. This is a significant concern among women.

Treatment for Eating Disorders

Treatment for eating disorders depends on the type of disorder a person is experiencing and the symptoms. Treatment includes a combination of psychological therapy, medical evaluation, and nutrition education on the victims. The most common treatment measures include;

Psychological therapy; it entails seeing a psychologist or mental health specialist regularly. Individuals with eating disorders should visits therapy centers to help them normalize their eating patterns and develop problem-solving skills (Wilson, Grilo & Vitousek, 2007). At the therapy units, they would be guided on how they can maintain healthy ways to help cope with stressful situations that may lead them to develop unhealthy eating habits.

  • Nutrition education; people with eating disorders should visit nutrition educationists and other professionals concerned for help.
  • Antidepressants; individuals with eating disorders such as bulimia and binge eating disorder can take an antidepressant.


In conclusion, just like any other type of disorder such as drug addiction, eating disorders have presented severe health effects in many people. Anyone can fall victim to unhealthy eating habits and ultimately eating disorders. Individuals should stay at bay from unhealthy eating habits and any other risk factors related to them. They should also seek medical assistance when they notice any signs or symptoms of eating g disorders for help before it culminates into something detrimental.


Collier, D. A., & Treasure, J. L. (2004). The etiology of eating disorders. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 185(5), 363-365.

Eisenberg, D., Nicklett, E. J., Roeder, K., & Kirz, N. E. (2011). Eating disorder symptoms among college students: Prevalence, persistence, correlates, and treatment-seeking. Journal of American College Health, 59(8), 700-707.

Klump, K. L., Bulik, C. M., Kaye, W. H., Treasure, J., & Tyson, E. (2009). Academy for eating disorders position paper: eating disorders are serious mental illnesses. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 42(2), 97-103.

Rome, E. S., & Ammerman, S. (2003). Medical complications of eating disorders: an update. Journal of Adolescent Health, 33(6), 418-426.

Wilson, G. T., Grilo, C. M., & Vitousek, K. M. (2007). Psychological treatment of eating disorders. American Psychologist, 62(3), 199.

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