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The Fear Of Size!

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  • The Fear Of Size!

    The Fear Of Size!

    It is said that “Small is beautiful”. The modern concept is that “Slim is beautiful”. So many adolescent girls and young women, who dream of possessing pencil-thin figures, get into eating disorders.

    The eating disorders are of two kinds, Anorexia and Bulimia Nervosa. Anorexia means a lack of desire to eat. Girls and women suffering from this disorder keep away from food by starving. They use diet pills and do excessive exercises to keep the body weight low.

    The well known symptoms are keeping the body weight far less than the ideal weight; intense fear of putting on weight; irregular menstrual cycles and other disorders related to eating.

    Anorexia puts a strain on the heart and lowers the heart rate. It throws the electrolyte balance and hormonal balance out of gear. It causes muscle weakness, osteoporosis and immune dysfunction and may lead to premature death.

    People who suffer from Bulimia Nervosa find it difficult to fast or keep away from food. They have a ‘ravenous hunger’ as meant by the name of the disorder. They indulge in ‘binge eating’ and purge or vomit the food eaten–in an effort to keep thin.

    The onset of Bulimia Nervosa is in the age range of 13 to 20 years. It is difficult to detect the disorder, as the person looks healthy and appears to eat well. But the repeated cycles of binging and purging have devastating effects on the body.

    The strong gastric acids erode the teeth enamel and lacerate the lining of the mouth and throat. The person may suffer from dehydration and potassium depletion. The salivary glands get swollen.

    A well developed personality can cover up many defects in a person’s appearance. So the young girls need to strive to become wholesome and attractive personalities, rather than pencil-thin-girls with several severe health problems.

    Visalakshi Ramani