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Things That Only Loved Ones Of People With Anorexia Would Know

Things That Only Loved Ones Of People With Anorexia Would Know

Anorexia (also known as anorexia nervosa) is a serious disorder where individuals have a distorted body image and are obsessed with preventing weight gain. Having a close friend or family member who suffers from this illness, it can be hard to understand what exactly they are going through, but it is incredibly important to be supportive — no matter what.

Here are some myths about those who suffer from anorexia.

1. Being thin means you automatically have anorexia

There are many reasons why a person can be thin, and it is important not to make assumptions that they are suffering from anorexia. There are a myriad of different reasons that someone is underweight, from suffering from cancer to going through depression.

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2. Anorexia is something that an individual will grow out of

Anorexia is not just a phase that an individual is going through and eventually will snap out of. This disorder can be an ongoing problem for the majority of someone’s life if they are not treated properly.

3. Only girls suffer from anorexia

The percentage is lower, but men can suffer from this disorder as well. The biggest issue is that, since anorexia is often perceived as a “women’s disease,” men are less likely to seek medical attention.

4. Being thin is the only goal of an anorexic

The end goal of an individual who suffers from anorexia is not to be thin, but more about the feeling of being in control. Being thin is just one of the ways that a person can convince themselves that they are in control of their lives. This need for control can stretch into other areas of their lives, including their work and social interactions.

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5. Food is the main obsession of an anorexic

Food is only one of the things that continuously occupies an anorexic’s mind. They are also focused on control, weight gain, and other aspects of their life that, to them, might be spinning out of control.

6. A person can either be anorexic or bulimic

An anorexic can also go through phases where they purge their food as well by taking laxatives or self-inducing vomiting. They may go a few days eating a small amount of food and then purge and then restrict themselves to a severely limited calorie intake.

7. Anorexics are never hungry or do not like food

People suffering from anorexia are in fact always hungry and still have cravings for certain types of food, but due to their need for control they cannot give in to their hunger pangs. When anorexics claim that they are not hungry or that they just ate a big meal, it is just a coping mechanism for the disorder.

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8. Anorexia is only for young people

It is a common belief that anorexia is a disease that only affects young individuals, but this is simply not true. Adults in their thirties and older have been known to suffer from this disorder in increasing numbers. Some have had anorexia when they were younger, while others are having it for the first time.

9. You cannot die from anorexia if you exercise enough to keep your heart strong

Anorexia is a serious illness that can be fatal if the individual does not seek proper treatment in time. No amount of exercise can substitute for the essential nutrients that a person is lacking when their calorie intake is so minimal.

10. Anorexics literally see a fat person when they look in the mirror

Distorted body image is one of the symptoms of anorexia, but that does not mean the sufferers see their body as fat when they look into the mirror. They can see that their bones are sticking out, but they will also hyper focus on a part of their body that has a bit of flesh. That spot is seen as a place where they need to lose weight.

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11. Dieting can lead to anorexia

Regular dieting does not automatically lead to anorexia, but for those who are prone to the disorder, a strict diet can easily spiral out of control.

12. Anorexia is just a cry for attention

Anorexia should not be taken lightly and is a serious life-threatening illness. If someone you love is suffering from this disorder, it is important to give them as much support and compassion as possible.

13. Anorexia is strictly caused by environmental influences

This disorder is not only caused by environmental factors like media and popular culture, but also by biological and psychological issues. Some individuals may be more wired to perfectionism, but the specifics are still unclear.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

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    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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