Anorexia Nervosa is an eating disorder that has the potential to be life-threatening. Anorexia Nervosa is characterized by the following: an inability to maintain an appropriate body weight, weight loss, fear of weight gain, and distorted self-image of one’s body.
Anorexia has a significant psychological component. Anorexia Nervosa affects both men and women of all ages. It is commonly associated with self-starvation and diminished appetite.
Types of Anorexia Nervosa:
There are two major types of anorexia – Binge/purge and Restrictive.
- Binge/purge anorexia is when the individual eats an increased amount of food in one sitting, and then, due to psychological feelings of guilt and remorse, will purge. Binging is the consumption of an increased massive amount of food. Purging is compensation through vomiting, excessive exercise, or the use of laxatives as a means to induce diarrhoea.
- Restrictive anorexia is the second most common type of anorexia. When an individual suffers from restrictive anorexia he/she will severely limit their caloric intake and only consume a minimal amount of food. These individuals are slowly starving themselves by under consuming calories and food. The key takeaway in identifying a patient who has anorexia is to be aware of their irrational fear of gaining weight, their refusal to consume foods or their abnormal eating habits.