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Eating Disorders: Types and Causes


Eating disorders and obesity have become a serious issue in modern healthcare, as there seems to be a growth in their development. This paper will focus on such conditions as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, muscle dysmorphia, and obesity. It will include possible physical and psychological symptoms and warning signs of the illnesses, as well as social groups whose members are likely to suffer from them.

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Although the symptoms of eating disorders often overlap, each has specific warning signs. Thus, anorexia nervosa is recognized through an abrupt weight loss and the inability to gain it. Women suffering from it often experience menstrual irregularities and consider themselves overweight (“Warning Signs” par. 5-6). It mostly affects young women who become obsessed with weight loss. Bulimia nervosa is diagnosed through recurrent episodes of uncontrollable eating. The amount of food consumed is usually higher than normal as the result of self-induced vomiting. It also shows sudden weight loss or gain and can lead to menstrual irregularities (“Warning Signs” par. 7). Generally, these eating disorders are likely to develop in women, often under the conditions of stress, such as sexual abuse and alcoholism.

Muscle dysmorphia is a condition associated with one’s dissatisfaction with his or her muscularity (Rollin par. 3). It can be recognized through maintaining an extreme workout routine and obsessively following one’s exercise program. This disorder is most often found in young men, unlike the previous two. As to obesity, it is a condition characterized by an excessive amount of body fat. Its symptoms include weight above average, shortness of breath after mild activity, and varicose veins. It may affect people who are genetically predisposed to it or are leading a sedentary lifestyle and those who suffer from other eating disorders. It can be deduced that such conditions originate from a variety of reasons, not always connected with one’s body image.


In conclusion, the term “eating disorder” includes a wide variety of conditions. They can affect people of different ages, gender, and occupation, and may be connected with other illnesses and genetics. Although symptoms partially overlap, bulimia nervosa, anorexia nervosa, muscular dysmorphia, and obesity have a set of definite warning signs to look for. Such disorders have serious physical and psychological consequences, which is why it is important to diagnose them promptly.

Works Cited

Rollin, Jennifer. “Muscle Dysmorphia: Signs, Symptoms, and Prevalence.” Eating Disorder Hope, Web.

“Warning Signs and Symptoms.” The National Eating Disorder Association, 2020. Web.

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