Incidences of anorexia have been increasing over the last several decades. Anorexia is destructive both physically and mentally. Up to 20 percent of sufferers die as a result of health complications created by malnutrition and low body weight or suicide. Those who develop anorexia can often be described as perfectionists, overachievers, or pleasers. Often highly self-critical, they may see themselves as inadequate, positive feedback from others. Verbal, physical, or sexual abuse are all risk factors for developing anorexia. Any negative parental influence or participation in activities that generally require slenderness can also contribute to the development of anorexia.
At Diets In Review, we take healthy weight loss seriously. The goal is a healthier life, not to be the skinniest person on the block. We want to be an inspiration of health, not thinspiration. When undertaken improperly weight loss can be as damaging to your body, or more so, than being overweight. Sadly, disordered eating patterns, obsessive exercising, and distorted body image affect many – more than 11 million people in the United States. Eating disorders are dangerous and life threatening. In fact, anorexia has a higher mortality rate than any other mental illness.
In many areas of the world, females are under immense pressure to be thin. This pressure is especially intense in Asia, where women always seem to be looking for ways to get skinnier. Experts say dieting in Asia tends to be more extreme than in the West, because of cultural perceptions of size. Asian men tend to be small. So, in order to feel masculine, they appreciate a woman who is even smaller than they are.
“The magic number is to be below 100 pounds, no matter your height or your weight,” says Philippa Yu, a clinical psychologist at the Hong Kong Eating Disorders Association. Often, women do not exercise to achieve this unrealistic weight, because of the perception that it will cause muscle growth, which is seen as masculine.
There is an unfortunate new bar being raised when it comes to pregnancy weight gain. Pregorexia is a relatively new phenomenon in which moms-to-be gain very little weight throughout their entire pregnancy and return to their pre-pregnant weight within just a few days of giving birth.
Pregorexia is affecting more and more American women who choose to eat as little as possible during pregnancy out of fear of gaining weight. With celebrities like Angelina Jolie and Nicole Kidman, who maintained a very thin figure throughout their pregnancy and reclaimed their pre-baby body in very little time, the spotlight on such high-profile women may be putting other women at risk for developing this disorder.
Drama just seems to follow Hollywood stars, no matter how low of a profile they keep. Case in point, a controversial comment made by celebrity Gwyneth Paltrow during a workout with her beloved trainer, Tracy Anderson. Paltrow, who is no stranger to putting in some serious sweaty hours at Anderson’s gym to whip her body back into shape after two pregnancies, made this rather tongue-in-cheek comment about what you need to do in order to look great:
“When you’re 35, you either starve yourself, or you do serious cardio.”
While a few Paltrow fans have staunchly criticized her comment, in my opinion, those attacking her are making the mistake of taking her comment a bit too literally.
When American Pie was released in 1999, Tara Reid became a sensation almost overnight thanks to her All-American Girl looks and body. But fast-forward about five years, a botched tummy tuck and breast augmentation, a few stays in alcohol rehab treatment centers and a battle with anorexia and you have the script for an all-too familiar, albeit sad and tragic, story of Hollywood fame and fortune gone seriously wrong. (more…)
Possessing some of the most powerful vocals in pop music, Whitney Houston is back on the music scene as she debuted her highly anticipated new album “I Look to You” on August 31, 2009.
Set to appear on the season premiere of Oprah, a two-day event starting September 14, as the “music interview of the decade,” Whitney will answer some of Oprah‘s toughest questions on her life, including her drug abuse, divorce and the inspiration behind her long-awaited sixth album. (more…)
The world was shocked nearly two weeks ago to learn of Michael Jackson’s passing. He was and will always be a legend and his music and dancing will live on forever. I live in L.A. and have heard hundreds of different stories that lead to his death; a couple of which are related to anorexia and exercising with his trainer, Lou Ferrigno, for six hours or more a day in preparation for his upcoming tour.
I was working at my penthouse gym in Beverly Hills the day he passed away and it seemed like the entire L.A. area shut down in disbelief. Word is that Michael had dropped to around 100 pounds, which is a sickly weight for a male, at the time of his death. (For his height of 5′ 10″ at 100 pounds, Michael’s BMI would have been about 14, dangerously underweight.) While the world mourns, Michael’s music is becoming more and more popular today. (more…)
In honor of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (February 22 – 28), we are investigating what some of the most current and effective therapies for treating this devastating disease.
As yoga has been met with open arms here in the West, medical science has also been quick to embrace this 5,000-year old Indian tradition. Recently, yoga has been used to address the psychological factors that enable a full-blown eating disorder like anorexia or bulimia. In fact, some of the most prominent eating disorder treatment centers in the country, like the Renfrew Center in Coconut Creek, Fla., and New York Presbyterian Hospital in White Plains, N.Y., incorporate gentle, meditative yoga courses into their regular treatment plan. (more…)
As we continue to bring awareness to National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (February 22 – February 28), it is fitting that we highlight some of the more well-known cases of eating disorders that have affected some of Hollywood’s most talented starlets.
Nicole Richie and Victoria Beckham are well-known faces of eating disorders.
Tinseltown is known for its hypercritical attitude toward body image and weight. Female entertainers, by far, bear the sharper brunt of this fierce and oftentimes unfair sword than their male colleagues. From the latest media-bashing of Jessica Simpson to the dissection of Hollywood’s new mom’s post-baby bodies, there is little wonder why as many as 10 million females (and 1 million males) are fighting a life and death battle with an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia and millions more are struggling with binge eating disorder, according to the National Eating Disorder Association.
While no one wants to see anyone suffering from a disorder of any kind, celebrities who have been forthright about their weight struggles open up a dialogue for the rest of us who may be too shamed or too fearful to voice our stories.
Here is a look at the more well-publicized cases of eating disorders in young Hollywood women. (more…)