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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 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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