Unlock the nutritional power with our experts for a healthier life


Anorexia Nervosa- A Eating Disorder during Adolescence

Anorexia Nervosa is a psychological eating disorder in which a person refuses to maintain a minimally normal body weight for height & age. They have Intense fear of gaining weight and have body image distortion.

Anorexia is a serious condition that requires treatment. Extreme weight loss in people with anorexia can lead to malnutrition, dangerous health problems and even death.

Anorexia can occur in people of any age & sex due to increasing social pressure. It most commonly affects adolescents and young adult women. 

How will you identify that someone has anorexia or not ?

There are several emotional, behavioral and physical signs and symptoms of anorexia. 

Signs and Symptoms of Anorexia Nervosa

Emotional and mental signs of anorexia include:

• Having an intense fear of gaining weight

• Distorted self-image

• Having an obsessive interest in food, calories and dieting

• Feeling overweight even if they are underweight.

• Fear of certain foods or food groups.

• Being very self-critical.

• Denying the seriousness of your low body weight and/or food restriction.

• Feeling a strong desire to be in control.

• Feeling irritable and/or depressed.

• Experiencing thoughts of self-harm or suicide

Behavioral signs of anorexia include:

• Changes their eating habits or routines

• Eliminating certain food types or food groups.

• Purging through intentional vomiting and/or misusing laxatives or diuretics

• Going to the bathroom right after eating.

• Using diet pills or appetite suppressants.

• Extreme physical training or excercise

• Continuing to diet even their weight is low 

• Making meals for others but not themselves

• Wearing loose clothing to hide weight loss and stay warm

• less interact with friends and social events

Physical signs of anorexia include:

• Significant weight loss over several weeks or months.

• Not maintaining an appropriate body weight based on height & age

• Unexplained change in growth curve or body mass index (BMI) in children and still growing adolescents.

 Physical symptoms of anorexia that are side effects of starvation and malnutrition include:

• Dizziness & Feeling tired

• Slow heartbeat or irregular heartbeat

• Low blood pressure 

• Poor concentration and focus.

• Feeling cold all the time.

• Absent periods (amenorrhea) or irregular menstrual periods.

• Shortness of breath.

• Bloating and/or abdominal pain.

• Muscle weakness and loss of muscle mass.

• Dry skin, brittle nails and/or thinning hair.

• Poor wound healing and frequent illness.

• Bluish or purple coloring of the hands and feet.

Anorexia nervosa risk factors

Several factors can increase a person’s risk for developing anorexia nervosa, including:

past criticism about their eating habits, weight, or body shape

– a history of teasing or bullying, especially about weight or body shape

– a sense of pressure from society or their profession to be slim

– low self-esteem

– anxiety

– having a personality that tends toward obsession or perfectionism

– sexual abuse

– a history of dieting

– pressure to fit in with cultural norms that are not their own

– historical trauma, such as racism

Prevention from Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia Nervosa is a serious disease which doesn’t include only physical but mental & behavioural change also, With the right treatment, recovery from Anorexia Nervosa is possible.

Consider a treatment team — including a dietitian, a therapist, and a psychiatrist — all of whom should specialize in eating disorders.

• It is psychological disorder so there is proper counseling from psychiatrist is also needed.

• Family members or Parents of Adolescents should have healthy attitudes and actions around weight, food, exercise, and appearance. 

• Parents & teachers can help or informally counsel children and teens build self-esteem in many ways. This includes academics, hobbies, and volunteer work. Focus on activities that are related to increase their self esteem, confidence, acceptance & feeling of belongingness.

• A person with anorexia nervosa will intentionally restrict their food intake as a way to lose weight so a dietician can help to give them proper diet & educate them about importance of nutrition at the stage of adolescence.

 Dietary Modifications

• Due to low weight, Calorie should be increase so add more energy dense food

• In starting of the treatment, include first fluid  based energy diet then give Semi-fluid & after that solid diet because according to the level of digestion of the child

• Serving Size should be small & nutrients rich because anorexic patient is not able to eat

• Food should be based on child’s interest so they can’t deny

• Include simple carbohydrates so Adolescents can eat more to gain weight

• Take Vitamins & minerals rich food to build immunity because it protects from infections 

Anorexia Nervosa demands a holistic approach to recovery, encompassing physical, mental, and nutritional aspects. At FitandCure, our expert dieticians specialize in supporting individuals on their journey to healing. With tailored dietary modifications, counseling, and a focus on overall well-being, our dedicated team strives to empower those affected by this challenging disorder. Let FitandCure dietician be your partner in reclaiming a healthy relationship with food and yourself. Recovery is possible, and we are here to guide you every step of the way.




Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *