Managing Anorexia Nervosa


Occasionally, a person may be concerned about how much they eat and how much the food may result in excessive weight gain. However, extreme worry about weight gain may lead to risky eating disorders like anorexia nervosa. Persons with anorexia have a relatively low body weight compared to body form and height. The condition is divided into two major categories—restrictive and binge anorexia. A patient with restrictive anorexia observes a strict diet, which involves ingesting fewer calories than are necessary to retain a healthy body. On the other hand, a person with binge anorexia consumes larger portions of food than is necessary and later purges through, vomiting, using laxatives, or extreme exercises.

Anorexia nervosa is becoming a common disease among young adults in the United States, and it is essential to identify the affected persons before it is too late. Signs and symptoms of the condition include significant weight loss, obsession with food calories and weight, putting on warm clothes even when it is hot, extreme exercise routine despite the weather, and the fear of gaining weight. Friends and families should report to health facilities if they notice such symptoms on anyone related to them. As a result, the research focuses on the most effective ways of managing anorexia nervosa in the United States.


This research seeks to establish the most effective methods of identifying anorexia nervosa cases and eradicating the condition. More than nine million Americans suffer from a wide variety of eating disorders like anorexia nervosa, and the number is increasing significantly (Wildes & Marcus, 2011). Similarly, two in every four hundred Americans suffer from anorexia nervosa. Likewise, forty percent of young female adults claim to have binged and then vomited to prevent weight gain. A recent study shows that only about eighteen percent of female teenagers areoverweight, out of the sixty percent who believe the same (Parling, Mortazavi &Ghaderi, 2010). Likewise, approximately eighty in every one hundred thousand deaths among young adults is due to anorexia nervosa—which is four times more than the projected number in that age group (Chan et al., 2010). Consequently, it is essential to take the necessary measures to control and prevent the spread of that condition.

Establishing the most effective ways of detecting and controlling anorexia nervosa will help to reduce the number of cases in America significantly. The disease is affecting most of the young female adults—who are concerned about weight gain and physical appearance (Jenkins & Ogden, 2012). Additionally, the number of deaths among the youth is increasing because of the adverse effects of the eating disorder. On the other hand, families also worry because the affected patients tend to keep to themselves most of the time (Rask-Andersen et al., 2010). As a result, the paper seeks to find the most effective ways of identifying and managing the disorder before it is too late.

Literature Review

Chan et al. (2010) look at the challenges that patients with bulimia and anorexia nervosa go through when making decisions. The patients seem to make impaired decisions when it comes to dietary options. Additionally, the study asserts that patients with bulimia and anorexia nervosa tend to forget meals. The result is that some of these patients starve to death unknowingly because of impaired memory.

Jenkins andOgden (2012) interviewed women who had a past with anorexia nervosa. Most women struggled with depression, which led to eating disorders. The women claimed that it was difficult to consume food because they wanted to lose weight. Similarly, most of the women were obsessed with diet and regular exercises. The study suggests that self-awareness is essential if a patient wants to recover. Theresearch is vital because it reveals the traits that concerned persons should identify in potential anorexia patients.

Parling, Mortazavi, and Ghaderi (2010) focus on the level of self-awareness in patients suffering from anorexia nervosa. The results show that anxiety and depression are the leading causes of alexithymia in patients. Similarly, these patients are very poor at self-reporting because of a high level of perfectionism. The study concludes that patients with anorexia nervosa are not good at expressing their emotions. Likewise, Parling et al. (2010), suggest that the most effective methods to detect personality disorders are those that are unrelated to moods.

Rask-Andersen et al. (2010) establish a link between anorexia nervosa and genetic disorders. The study compares the behavior of patients suffering from anorexia nervosa with some genetic conditions. The research suggests that treating genetic disorders will reduce the number of patients living with anorexia cases in the United States.

Wildes and Marcus (2011) assert that psychotherapy is an effective way of controlling anorexia nervosa. The therapy encourages patients to accept reality and act accordingly. The research shows that treatment helps patients to maintain a normal diet and gain considerable weight. Additionally, patients who completed the therapy expressed less depression and anxiety. The research is crucial because it gives one method of managing the disorder.




Chan, T. W. S., Ahn, W. Y., Bates, J. E., Busemeyer, J. R., Guillaume, S., Redgrave, G. W., … & Courtet, P. (2014). Differential impairments underlying decision making in anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa: A cognitive modeling analysis. International Journal of Eating Disorders47(2), 157-167.

Jenkins, J., & Ogden, J. (2012). Becoming ‘whole’again: A qualitative study of women’s views of recovering from anorexia nervosa. European eating disorders review20(1), e23-e31.

Parling, T., Mortazavi, M., & Ghaderi, A. (2010). Alexithymia and emotional awareness in anorexia nervosa: time for a shift in the measurement of the concept?. Eating behaviors11(4), 205-210.

Rask-Andersen, M., Olszewski, P. K., Levine, A. S., & Schiöth, H. B. (2010). Molecular mechanisms underlying anorexia nervosa: focus on human gene association studies and systems controlling food intake. Brain research reviews62(2), 147-164.

Wildes, J. E., & Marcus, M. D. (2011). Development of emotion acceptance behavior therapy for anorexia nervosa: a case series. International Journal of Eating Disorders44(5), 421-427.

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