25 million individuals, in the United States, will indulge in overeating this year. That number may sound shocking, but if you take into account that individuals have been suffering from eating disorders since 700 (B.C.), it is not that alarming. That’s right; 700 (B.C.)! Ancient Romans would overindulge in lavish dinners, then leave, relieve themselves, by vomiting; and came back for more. Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, depicted drawings of individuals purging to “remain healthy”. Whether it is over eating or under eating, 10% of individuals suffering from this disease are male and 7% of all women are currently suffering, as well. Since the average age of suffers plummets, to 11-13 years old, we must become aware of the causes and treatments.
-Environmental: Each individual’s surrounding is very influential; in particular, the media. The media presents the viewing public with a standardized male and female look. Since it is everywhere, it nearly becomes etched in out brain. Individuals with a weak or little confidence, can be affected by this stereotype. It is commonplace, for this individual to begin to critique their own body against the media. Unfortunately, no matter how they look it is not good enough.
-Biological: Individual who suffer from a low serotonin level (i.e. depression or obsessive compulsive disorder) are susceptible to eating disorders.
-Developmental Etiology: The way an individual is raised can effect the personality, one develops.
-Trauma: Any event, in which, an individual witnesses or is part of a life threatening situation, can be the catalyst for an eating disorder.
-Each individual has a different case, and they must be approached accordingly. Whether it is through support groups, one-on-one therapy, or clinical programs, the individual must receive immediate help. If you feel an individual or yourself may be suffering from an eating disorder, contact your local doctor immediately.