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Dying to Be Thin (pg. 2)

American Idol runner-up Katharine McPhee battled bulimia for five years, but seeked out help after nailing her AI audition.
Courtesy of Fox

Eating Disorders - What is Bulimia?

Bulimia Nervosa is an eating disorder that involves episodes of binge eating, followed by episodes of purging. Simply put, a bulimic rapidly eats huge amounts of food at one time (binging) and then rids it from the body (purging). A binge episode can involve eating up to 20,000 calories and usually involves "comfort foods." That's more than 10 times your daily caloric intake! To rid the body of food, bulimics resort to, one or any combination of, fasting, vomiting, compulsive exercising, abusing laxatives and/or diuretics (substances or drugs that make you go to the bathroom), and enemas (flushing out the bowels with fluid). Binging and purging is usually followed by intense feelings of guilt and shame. Despite this incredible physical abuse, and contrary to popular opinion, the bulimic may not be visibly underweight and may even be slightly overweight. Regardless, the bulimic - just like the anorexic - uses self-destructive eating behaviors to deal with psychological problems. Often these problems go much deeper than the obsession with food and weight.

Eating Disorders - Bulimia Warning Signs

Think you or someone you know is bulimic? There's more involved than just possible weight loss, weakness and exhaustion. Consider some of these danger signs.
  • Binging, or eating uncontrollably.
  • Attempting to lose weight by strict dieting, fasting, compulsive exercise, vomiting or abusing laxatives or diuretics.
  • Using the bathroom frequently; immediately after meals.
  • Obsessed with body weight.
  • Depression, mood swings, feeling out of control.
  • Swollen glands in face and neck.
  • Regularly experience reflux or heartburn.
  • Bloating.
  • Irregular periods.
  • Digestive problems such as constipation, indigestion, and Inflammatory Bowel Syndrome.
  • Tooth decay caused by stomach acid from constant vomiting.
  • Sore throat caused by stomach acid.
  • Vomiting blood.
  • Eating Disorders - Bulimia Can Kill

    Anything to look good may be the motto, but the price is way too high! Check out a few bulimia by-products. Yuck!
  • Dehydration.
  • Damage to the bowels, liver and kidneys.
  • Stomach ulcers.
  • Electrolyte imbalance, which leads to irregular heartbeat, and in some cases, cardiac arrest.
  • Cancer in the squamous cell lining of the throat, from years of chronic vomiting.
  • Eating Disorders - Facts to Chew On

  • Five percent of college women are bulimic.
  • Ten percent of bulimics will die from starvation, cardiac arrest, other medical complications from the disease or suicide.
  • Click here for an overview on Anorexia Nervosa.
  • Check out TeenOutReach for more information on eating disorders.
  • Have you suffered from an eating disorder? and we'll publish a collection of your experiences and thoughts on this subject.

    Related Stories:

  • A Body Image Reality Check
  • Losing Weight the Wrong Way
  • Eating Disorder Awareness Week
  • More Health and Body Info!
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    Comments

    JennyD

    JennyD wrote:

    u don't have to be thin
    commented: Sat Sep 14, 2013

    there are 1 more comments

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    rebelfeminist posted in Style:
    Well you won't want to volunteer because that's unpaid.  Your profile says you're 11 which means you can't get a real job but you can babysit (you'll need first aid training for this), or you can pet sit or do yard work. Those are good jobs to have at your age.
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    lawliet16
    lawliet16 posted in Friends:
    Maybe your overrating her personality while underrating yourself. Girls extremely like confident men so start working on your self esteem first because it stimulates interest to get to know you more especially on the romantic context and don`t forget to just be yourself so that you will know if she accept you to who you are and don`t let the "ideal boy" standard of the society bring you down. Remember that real happiness can be achieve when you are true to yourself so don`t mind what other people think of you and stop comparing yourself to the boys around her. Embrace your imperfections and wash away your insecurities and maybe she`ll like you back ;)
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    lawliet16
    Considering your age, it is normal that your parents might not accept it in case he likes you and the feeling is mutual and you must understand them. This is time when you need to focus in your studies and prepare for your future career and not for your future husband. You are still very young and trust me, you are still emotionally unprepared for this one heck of a roller coaster ride of emotions. Know the difference between loving that person and loving the feeling that you are in love. ;)
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    peace16
    peace16 posted in Friends:
    Well I am happy that you off of them. 
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