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Diagnosing Bulimia: Do You Have A Problem with Food?

The first step toward a diagnosis is to admit the existence of an eating disorder. Often, the patient needs to be compelled by a parent or others to see a doctor because the patient may deny and resist the problem. Some patients may even self-diagnose their condition as an allergy to carbohydrates, because after being on a restricted diet, eating carbohydrates can produce gastrointestinal problems, dizziness, weakness, and palpitations. This may lead such people to restrict carbohydrates even more severely.
For more information and a quiz on the disorder:
http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/ucdhs/health/a-z/49EatingDisorders/index.html

What are the symptoms of Bulimia?


• Eating uncontrollably, purging, strict dieting, fasting, vigorous exercise
• Vomiting or abusing laxatives or diuretics in an attempt to lose weight
• Vomiting blood
• Using the bathroom frequently after meals
• Preoccupation with body weight
• Depression or mood swings
• Feeling out of control
• Swollen glands in neck and face
• Heartburn, bloating, indigestion, constipation
• Irregular periods
• Dental problems
• Sore throat
• Weakness, exhaustion
• Bloodshot eyes


For more information: http://www.mamashealth.com/bulimia.asp


What is Bulimia?


According to Mama's Health, bulimia, also called bulimia nervosa, is a psychological eating disorder. Bulimia is characterized by episodes of binge-eating followed by inappropriate methods of weight control (purging). Inappropriate methods of weight control include vomiting, fasting, enemas, excessive use of laxatives and diuretics, or compulsive exercising. Excessive shape and weight concerns are also characteristics of bulimia.
For more information: http://www.mamashealth.com/bulimia.asp


What are some other indicators of Bulimia?

Many sufferers with bulimia have depressive symptoms and it may be that their binges started off as a way of coping with feeling unhappy. However, feeling stuffed and bloated will make these feelings worse, while vomiting and purging leave a feeling of guilt and wretchedness.
For more information: http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/info/help/anor/

 

If You Have Bulimia?

Tell to someone you trust (i.e., parent, sibling, friend, teacher, clergy, counselor, etc.). You're going to need support, for the fear and shame can be overwhelming.

The behavior is addictive, and the disease is deadly. You're risking your life if you hide behind silence. Early intervention is key in overcoming the disease.

Some experts recommend a stepped approach to patients with bulimia, which may follow these stages, depending on the severity and response to initial treatments:

• Support groups. This is the least expensive approach and may be helpful for patients who have mild conditions with no health consequences.
• Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) along with nutritional therapy is the preferred first treatment for bulimia that does not respond to support groups.
• Drugs. The drugs used for bulimia are typically antidepressants known as serotonin-reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). A combination of CBT and SSRIs is very effective if CBT is not helpful alone.

For more information:
http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/ucdhs/health/a-z/49EatingDisorders/index.html

If You Don't Seek Help?

You're playing Russian Roulette with your life. Here are the risks associated with eating disorders:

• Death from malnutrition.
• Dangerous heart rhythms, including slow rhythms known as bradycardia, may develop. Such abnormalities can show up even in teenagers with anorexia.
• Blood flow is reduced.
• Cardiac arrest.
• Liver failure.
• The heart muscles starve, losing size.
• Stress hormones are higher.
• Dental problems.
• Bloating.
• Constipation.
• Hair loss.
• Anemia.
The list goes on and on.

For more information:
http://www.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/ucdhs/health/a-z/49EatingDisorders/index.html

Worried About a Friend?
IIf you are worried about your friend’s eating behaviors or attitudes, it is
important to express your concerns in a loving and supportive way. It is
also necessary to discuss your worries early on, rather than waiting until
your friend has endured many of the damaging physical and emotional effects
of eating disorders.
For more information:
http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/p.asp?WebPage_ID=319&Profile_ID=41174


Where can I get more information about Bulimia and other eating disorders?

National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD)
P.O. Box 7
Highland Park, IL 60035
Telephone: 847-831-3438
Internet address: http://www.anad.org


National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA)
603 Stewart Street, Suite 803
Seattle, WA 98101
Telephone: 800-931-2237
Internet address: http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org


Anorexia Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders, Inc. (ANRED)
(A clearinghouse for information about eating disorders)
Internet address: http://www.anred.com


Laureate Psychiatric Clinic and Hospital
Internet Address: http://www.laureate.com


Eating Disorders Awareness and Prevention, 603 Stewart Street, Suite 803, Seattle, WA 98101.
Call (206-382-3587) or (800-931-2237) or (http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/)


Harvard Eating Disorders Centers (http://www.hedc.org)


American Dietetic Association, 216 W. Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois 60606. Call (800-877-1600) or (312-899-0040) or (http://www.eatright.org/)
The organization offers a hot-line that allows people to speak to a licensed dietitian and also provides names of licensed dietitians for specific locations. Its web site is excellent and highly recommended.



National Women's Health Network. 514 10th St. NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20004. Call (202-347-1140) or (http://www.womenshealthnetwork.org/)
Membership fee is $25 per year and provides a bimonthly newsletter and access to information. Reports cost $6.00 for members and $8.00 for nonmembers.



International Eating Disorder Referral Organization. Eating Disorder Referral and Information Center, 2923 Sandy Pointe Suite, 6 Del Mar, CA 92014-2052. Call (858-481-1515) or (http://www.edreferral.com)



Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy, 305 Seventh Ave., 16th Fl., New York, NY 10001. Call (800-685-2228) or (212-647-1890) or (http://www.aabt.org/)
Offers information packets that include a list of behavior therapists, fact sheets on various psychological problems, and methods for choosing a therapist.



American Institute for Cognitive Therapy. Call (212-308-2440) or (http://www.cognitivetherapynyc.com/)


The American Psychiatric Association. Call (888-357-7924) or (http://www.psych.org/)


The American Psychological Association. Call (202-783-2077) or (http://www.psychologicalscience.org/)


The National Association of Social Workers. Call (202-408-8600) or (http://www.naswdc.org/)


The American Psychiatric Nurses Association. Call (703-243-2443) or (http://www.apna.org/)


American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (http://www.aacap.org/)


Other useful eating disorders web sites:


This is a personal site that has excellent information and support on eating disorders. (http://www.something-fishy.org/)


Site for family members and patients (http://closetoyou.org/eatingdisorders/)


Interesting site assists in finding the right therapist
(http://www.1-800-therapist.com/)


An online catalog that offers kitchen products, bathroom helpers and daily living products for people of all ages and abilities or disabilities.(http://www.dynamic-living.com)


GreySheeters Anonymous is a twelve step fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength, and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from compulsive overeating. (http://www.greysheet.org/)


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