A selection of the finest pieces of English composition ever crafted... if you don't come and read, expect the hit men within 15 minutes.
aka Anorexia and Bulimia... a whole cyber subculture I never knew about
Published on May 17, 2005 By Teegstar In Current Events
Greetings, tout le monde

Maybe I'm out of the loop or something, but only today did I stumble across pro-ana and pro-mia websites -- for the uninitiated, web communities helping people become better anorexics and bulimics.

I was shocked by what I saw and read... these girls (I didn't see any by guys) and their obsessions with their weight, and the "thinspiration" pictures of skeletal models and actresses that these women aspired to look like. Dozens of jagged ribs and knobbly elbows. Advice on how to combat hunger, with a last resort to combating hunger pangs being to curl up into a ball: "it really helps!".

Up until today I thought of anorexia as a private disease, and I was sure that people who knew they were anorexics or bulimics wouldn't want to be, and they certainly wouldn't celebrate it like these websites did. I thought it was something that people were oblivious to, and once they realised they had an eating disorder they would want to stop. Upon reflection I now realise it simply isn't something you can just switch off, and I'm sure that many people with eating disorders know what they're doing and hate it but don't know how to stop.

This was a bit of an eye-opener for me...

on May 21, 2005
Gross! Looking at those pictures I almost lost my lunch...I must have been thinspired.
on May 21, 2005
Wow. Just wow. This was an eye opener for me too....and the thing is, those girls with the stick thin arms and all their ribs showing are runway models. What kind of message are we sending teenagers when we put women who look like that on a pedestal?

It's no wonder we have kids who are anorexic when we glorify chicks who have skeletal figures.
on May 22, 2005
toblerone -- your name at least unthinspires me daily. thankyou.

dharmagrl -- e-zackly. i can't believe women that thin can be portrayed as beautiful by anyone other than those very same people with eating disorders.
on May 29, 2005
it's quite interesting, weight is a very culture influenced. I was talking to a student nurse from africa recently and she said she wasn't very popular with the boys at school as she was too thin. She had no bum therefore the boys were not interested in her. She indicated that I would be rather popular... it is amazing what different cultures view as overweight, underweight and "normal"
on Jul 30, 2005
Scary. Hey, I didn't realise you were writing again.
on Aug 16, 2005
Did you maybe check the other aspects of the forum, where there is support for people who need it. There are recovery forums, forums in regards to issues such as self-injury. This isn't being thrown in anyone's face, it is a reserved community that is there to offer support to anyone that needs it. If an anoretic goes to a forum, there is a place for her/him to express themselves, their fears, their motives, without being judged. If does not concern you, do not intrude, you are benefitting no one.
on Oct 08, 2005
oh my god! im only 13, and i hate my body and im always trying out diffrent diets and excersize, but this site seriously scared me. im not joking, i was seriosly scared to click on the diffrent links! i looked at the pictures and they dont look like models, they look like they should be in a coffin not on a catwalk. i honestly cannot beleive they are strong enough to walk, never mind strut. And as for the tips on how to make your family not notice is just plain sick! i honestly cannot beleive someone is sick enough to make a site like this. i mean, i think about weight all the time, annd i want to be like all the celebrities everywhere, but its not reality. Those people arent celebrities...They're anorexic!!!!!
on Oct 08, 2005
Eating disorders aren't the only things celebrated, SI (self injury) is too...cutting, buring, and the like. A lot of people try to stop, yet there are others out there who celebrate it and try new ways....bleh, it makes you sick...

Check out livejournal.com to see what I'm talking about...just look up interests and you'll see....sad, sad, sad.

on Oct 11, 2005
These sites are sick! but once someone closes one site like that down another one comes up!
these sites lead to peoples deaths! some people feel like what they are doing is right but it will never be!!! people need to realise tha ANA and MIA are gonna kill them! i personally eat what i want and when i need to! i weigh 7 stone which is my average weight for my size! i get attenton from boys because i am happy with my bvody as it is! Girls who have to live with hating there body need proper help! help that will get them to gain weight not loose it! I have found some stuff on th internet to help people with the illness that they have! please read it as it will help you!
What is Bulimia?
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. A binge is an episode where an individual eats a much larger amount of food than most people would in a similar situation. Binge eating is not a response to intense hunger. It is usually a response to depression, stress, or self esteem issues. During the binge episode, the individual experiences a loss of control. However, the sense of a loss of control is also followed by a short-lived calmness. The calmness is often followed by self-loathing. The cycle of overeating and purging usually becomes an obsession and is repeated often. People with bulimia can look perfectly normal. Most of them are of normal weight, and some may be overweight. Women with bulimia tend to be high achievers.

It is often difficult to determine whether a person is suffering from Bulimia. This occurs because binging and purging is often done in secret. Also, individuals suffering from Bulimia often deny their condition.

Sufferers consume huge quantities of food. Sometimes up to 20,000 calories at a time. The foods on which they binge tend to be foods labeled as "comfort foods" -- sweet foods, high in calories, or smooth, soft foods like ice cream, cake, and pastry. An individual may binge anywhere from twice a day to several times daily.

Causes of Bulimia

There is currently no definite known cause of bulimia. Researchers believe it begins with dissatisfaction of the person's body and extreme concern with body size and shape. Usually individuals suffering from bulimia have low self-esteem, feelings of helplessness and a fear of becoming fat.

Medical complications associated with Bulimia

• Erosion of tooth enamel because of repeated exposure to acidic gastric contents.
• Dental cavities, sensitivity to hot or cold food.
• Swelling and soreness in the salivary glands (from repeated vomiting).
• Stomach Ulcers.
• Ruptures of the stomach and esophagus.
• Abnormal buildup of fluid in the intestines.
• Disruption in the normal bowel release function.
• Electrolyte imbalance.
• Dehydration
• Irregular heartbeat and in severe cases heart attack
• A greater risk for suicidal behavior
• Decrease in libido

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.

Risk factors associated with Bulimia

There are certain professions where eating orders are more prevalent. Thinness is usually emphasized in these professions. The professions are: modeling, dancing, gymnastics, wrestling, and long-distance running.

The good news is that Bulimia can be overcome. The first step of effective treatment is to admit that you have a problem. After you have conquered this important first step, consult with your doctor so the two of you can come up with the right treatment for you.

What Is Anorexia?
Anorexia is an eating disorder where people starve themselves. Anorexia usually begins in young people around the onset of puberty. Individuals suffering from anorexia have extreme weight loss. Weight loss is usually 15% below the person's normal body weight. People suffering from anorexia are very skinny but are convinced that they are overweight. Weight loss is obtained by many ways. Some of the common techniques used are excessive exercise, intake of laxatives and not eating.Anorexics have an intense fear of becoming fat. Their dieting habits develop from this fear. Anorexia mainly affects adolescentgirls. People with anorexia continue to think they are overweight evenafter they become extremely thin, are very ill or near death. Often they will develop strange eating habits such as refusing to eat in front of other people. Sometimes the individuals will prepare big meals for others while refusing to eat any of it.The disorder is thought to be most common among whites, people of higher socioeconomic classes, and people involved in activities where thinness is especially looked upon, such as dancing, theater,anddistance running.

If you have a family member that with an Eating Disorder, theneed a lot of support. Suggest that your family member see an eating disorder expert. Be prepared for denial, resistance, and evenanger. A doctor and/or a counselor can help them battle their eating disorder

Symptoms of Anorexia

There are many symptoms for anorexia, some individuals may not experience all of they symptoms. The symptoms include: Body weight that is inconsistant with age, build and height (usually 15%below normal weight).Some other symtoms are:

• Loss of at least 3 consecutive menstrual periods (in women).
• Not wanting or refusing to eat in public.
• Other symptoms are: anxiety, weakness, brittle skin, shortness of breath, obsessiveness about calorie intake
• Medical consequences

Risks associated with Anorexia

There are many medical risks associated with anorexia. They include: shrunken bones, mineral loss, low body temperature, irregular heartbeat, permanent failure of normal growth, development of osteoporosis and bulimia nervosa.Continued use of laxatives is harmful to the body. It wears out thebowel muscle and casues it to decrease in function. Some laxatives contain harsh substances that may be reabsorbed into your system.

Anorexia and pregnancy

In order to have a healthy child, the average pregnant woman should gain between 25 and 35 pounds. Telling this to a person with anorexia is like telling a normal person to gain 100 pounds. If you are anorexic, you may have trouble conceiving a baby and carrying it to term. Irregular menstral cycles and weak bonesmake it more difficult to conceive. If you are underweight and do not eat the proper variety of foods, you and your baby could be in danger.Women with eating disorders have higher rates of miscarriages and your baby might be born prematurely which puts them at risk for many medical problems.

All pregnant women should receive proper prenatal care. Those recovering from anorexia or bulimia need special care. you should always take your pre-natal vitamins and have regular pre-natal visits. you should not exercise unless your doctor says it is okayand it is a good idea to enroll in a prenatal exercise class to be sure you are not overexerting yourself.

Difference between Anorexia and Bulimia

The biggest difference between anorexia and bulimia is that people suffering from bulimia eat large amounts of food and then throw up. This is called binge and purge. Anorexics do not eat large amounts and throw up. Bulimics do.

Eating disorder help

When seeking help, it is important to find ways that are helpful for you. What works for one person, may not work for you. Do not be afraid to tell people what you want and need.

Types of Treatment

There are many types of treatments available. Some of the most common treatments are: counseling, and paying attention tomedical and nutritional needs.The treatment should be tailored to the individual and will vary according to both the severity of the disorder and the patient's particular problems, needs, and strengths.

A family member has an eating disorder

If you have a family member with an eating disorder, they need a lot of support. Suggest that your family member see an eating disorder expert. Be prepared for denial, resistance, and even anger. A doctor and/or a counselor can help them battle their eating disorder.

good luck everyone with an eating disorder! i hope that by reading this it will make you feel more about your body!!!