A harmless remark by an educated parent on the physical attribute of their growing teenage girls resulted in a shocking “anorexia pact” by the duo at the age of 11. Now at the age of 33 and being doctors they don’t lead a normal life. Eating disorders might start at a very early , if not identified and treated can stay with you for life.
Anorexia nervosa is one of the most common eating disorder that is associated with abnormally low weight achieved by extreme dieting, fasting and followed by compulsive exercising. Mostly young girls are afflicted from this disorder especially in the absence of early parental care and support to inculcate healthy eating habits. Eating disorders have been around forever but finally society is accepting the seriousness of this ailment and encouraging parents, friends to come together and support the person suffering from it. There is a higher success rate of controlling and reversing it through family and social support .
Eating disorders mostly start from home and parents play an extremely critical role in stimulating and curbing them. Children very closely watch and imitate their parents. If the parents fuss too much about their looks and being thin the kids will imitate them. Similarly if the parents eat a lot of unhealthy food the kids would be inclined towards junk food even when they grow up. Therefore it is mostly parent’s responsibility to inculcate healthy eating habits amongst children.
Eating disorder can have serious repercussions on health like weakness, fatigue, anaemia, heart & kidney problems, osteoporosis, infertility, disruption of sugar levels and even death. Nature and nurture is equally responsible for this condition. Therefore it is imperative to apply a three pronged approach to dealing with it.First restore the healthy weight of an individual, second to treat the psychological factors that may have caused this situation and lastly ensure there is total support and care to prevent relapse.
Healthy Food does not make you fat. Its unhealthy eating patterns like eating too much processed food that only has empty calories and not nutrition. Also controlling the portions even at an early stage is important. This does not mean dieting it means regulating a healthy meal pattern in children where importance is give to a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, dairy and grains. If a healthy food routine is followed the kids will tend to eat less junk as they will be fuller for longer resulting in optimum growth, overall health and better immunity.
Also teens suffering from eating disorders tend to be very sensitive and emotional. Its important as a parents need to be more tuned to their emotion needs, provide them that extra affection and care.