Anorexia nervosa is a very serious eating disorder. It may lead to death as a consequence of starvation or other medical conditions caused by lack of food. The limit for anorexia in adults is usually put at a BMI of less than 17.5 in combination with other symptoms. Between a half and one percent of young people suffer from anorexia.
Here are typical signs of anorexia nervosa:
- Refuses to keep body weight above a BMI of 17,5.
- Has an exaggerated fear of gaining weight or becoming fat, even though the person is in fact below normal weight.
- For women: Three menstruations in succession did not arrive.
Those who eat too little as a consequence of a disease are not classified as having anorexia nervosa.
Those who either won't or can't eat sufficient food are classified as having anorexia nervosa.
The desire to avoid eating too much is often combined with an excessive fear of becoming fat and extreme notions about wholesome and unwholesome food.
It can also depend on an addictive condition where starvation stimulates the body's reward centre. More.
Those with anorexia frequently deny that they are underweight, or ill, just as alcoholics deny that they are addicted to alcohol.
Women with anorexia often miss their menstruation several times in succession.
There are two main types of personality who are subject to anorexia:
- The restrictive type who limit all their eating and often have a strong will.
- The compulsive eating type who alternate between eating and removing all excessive nutrition in the same way as those with bulimia. Those with this type of problem often have other addictive conditions and difficulties with impulse control.