Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by mental symptoms that restrict the patient's desire to eat food. Patients of anorexia nervosa have an extreme fear of gaining weight, which leads them to exercise too much or to starve themselves. Age, gender, puberty, weight imbalance, and dieting are some of the risk factors associated with anorexia nervosa.
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It is among startling facts that this eating disorder is common among women from industrialized countries. Medical facts state that this eating disorder is an emotional disorder in which patient focuses too much on food and tries to control eating to a pathological level. One of the primary symptoms of anorexia nervosa is severe weight loss. Some physical symptoms associated with this eating disorder include:
- Dry skin
- Excessive weight loss
- Low blood pressure
- Swollen hands and feet
Behavioral symptoms of anorexia nervosa include:
- Distorted self-image or perception
- Inability to remember things
- Obsessive compulsive behavior
Is There a Cure?
Research facts state that anorexia nervosa is 100 percent curable in 80 percent of cases where diagnosis and treatment happen early. Statistical facts state that some patients do get cured completely and show no symptoms of an eating disorder but others need to continue regular treatment while a few may lapse and need to return to treatment.
Treatment of Anorexia Nervosa
A combination of treatment therapies can help patients of anorexia nervosa. Treatment methods may include psychotherapy, medication, and family therapy, especially for young patients. Alternative treatment methods may help the patients suffering from nutritional deficiencies. Intake of antidepressants can help in the treatment of eating disorder along with cognitive behavioral therapy. Some treatment options that can help patients of this eating disorder are listed as follows:
- Medication: Though there is no medication approved for the treatment of anorexia nervosa, antidepressants can help. Doctors can prescribe some medication that may provide relief from other associated symptoms.
- Herbs: Medicinal herbs can help in the treatment of this eating disorder. These herbs strengthen the body's nervous system. Milk thistle, ashwagandha, catnip, and fenugreek are some examples of medicinal herbs that can help patients of this eating disorder.
- Diet: A healthy diet can help to recover from this eating disorder. Consumption of six to eight glasses of water daily can help. Soft drinks or refined sugars should be avoided. Foods containing protein can help the patients of this eating disorder.
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