Year: 2020

Symptoms of Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia nervosa is a psychiatric disorder in which the sufferer has an obsession to have a thin body and is very afraid of having a fat body or looking fat. Even though his body is thin, the person always thinks that his body is still not thin or fat. Generally, anorexia nervosa attacks more women than men. Apart from anorexia nervosa, there are other eating disorders, namely bulimia.

Although both eating disorders, but these two psychiatric disorders have differences. The difference between anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa can be seen from the weight and behavior caused. Bulimia psychiatric disorders generally have a normal weight because people with bulimia have an obsession with overeating, then spit out the food, while people with anorexia generally have a weight below average and have an obsession for thinness. Anorexia can be very dangerous because it will cause malnutrition in the body of the sufferer, if not given help.

Symptoms of anorexia include physical and emotional symptoms. In addition, symptoms of this disease can also be seen from the behavior exhibited by sufferers.

Physical symptoms

  • Excessive weight loss.
  • Look thin and not ideal weight.
  • Loss of sexual desire.
  • Disorders of the heart organ, such as palpitations.
  • Low blood pressure.
  • Kidney failure.
  • Dry skin on hands and feet due to lack of blood flow.
  • Dehydration.
  • Easily tired, even unconscious without cause.
  • Tooth easily damaged.
  • Smooth hair appears on the face and other body parts.
  • Can’t stand the cold.
  • Thinning hair and easily fall out.
  • Constipation or stomach ache.
  • Swelling in the arms and legs.
  • Menstrual disorders.
  • Bluish fingers and toes.

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Psychological symptoms

  • Feel inferior.
  • Easily anxious and depressed.
  • Fear of weight gain.
  • Too thinking about body shape and weight.
  • Feel fat even though you are underweight.
  • Concentration ability decreases.
  • Easily angry at mealtime.
  • Excessive in running a diet and maintaining weight.

Symptoms of behavior

  • Excess in the diet, such as counting the number of calories.
  • Feeling eating a lot even if you only eat in small portions.
  • Hiding food.
  • Abuse of slimming drugs, diuretics, and laxatives.
  • Often look in the mirror to see the shape of the body.
  • Lying by saying you’ve eaten even though you haven’t.
  • Withdraw from the social environment.
  • Excessive physical exercise, and stress when unable to do it.
  • Self-harm, even to attempted suicide.
  • Frequently weighing.
  • Do not want to eat in public.

Prevention of Anorexia Nervosa

There is no specific prevention that can be done against anorexia.

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How to Overcome Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are mental disorders when consuming food. People with this disorder can consume too little or too much food, and are obsessed with body weight or body shape.

There are several types of eating disorders, but the three most common types are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and eating disorders. This disorder can occur at any age, but more often experienced by adolescents, around the age of 13 to 17 years.

The cause of this eating disorder is usually a combination of genetic factors, biological factors, and psychological problems. To handle this, psychiatrists can do psychotherapy, and give antidepressant or anti-anxiety drugs.

Symptoms of Eating Disorders

Symptoms felt by people with eating disorders vary, depending on the type of disorder. Symptoms of an overeating disorder usually include:

Bulimia nervosa

Bulimia nervosa is an eating disorder that makes sufferers want to immediately dispose of the food they consume in an unhealthy way, including by:

  • Vomit back food that has been eaten.
  • Use laxatives or drugs that dispose of body fluids.

The action was carried out because the sufferer felt guilty having eaten a lot and was afraid of excess weight. As a result of his behavior, people with bulimia can feel interference in the form of:

  • Inflammation in the throat.
  • Swollen salivary glands in the neck and jaw.
  • Severe dehydration due to lack of fluids.
  • Indigestion, such as acid reflux disease (GERD) or irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Tooth sensitive and damaged.
  • Electrolyte disturbance.

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Anorexia nervosa

This disorder makes sufferers limit their food intake because they feel excessive body weight, even though in reality, his body is slim or even too thin. Anorexia nervosa sufferers will also weigh their weight repeatedly.

Too little calorie intake in patients with anorexia nervosa can cause disorders such as:

The growth of hair or fine hairs throughout the body (lanugo).

  • Dry skin.
  • Muscle becomes weak.
  • Often feel cold due to low body temperature.
  • Menstruation becomes irregular, does not even experience menstruation.
  • Hypotension or low blood pressure.
  • Anemia or lack of blood.
  • Bone loss.
  • Some organs do not function (multiorgan failure).

The above disorders can be fatal so that the sufferer dies. Hunger can also cause sufferers to feel so hopeless that they attempt suicide.

Overeating disorders

On going to eat quickly and in very large portions, although not hungry. Overeating, sufferers often lose self-control when eating. As a result, people with this disorder will have excess weight or obesity. Symptoms of an overeating disorder usually include:

  • Eat large amounts of food.
  • Eat very fast.
  • Keep eating when the stomach is full.
  • Hide when you eat because you are embarrassed when you see someone.

When to see a doctor

If you feel you have one of the eating disorders above, consult a psychiatrist immediately, because eating disorders are generally difficult to overcome without the help of a doctor.

But unfortunately, people who experience eating disorders often do not feel that they need help. If you are worried about someone’s unusual behavior when eating, try to talk to him about the odd behavior and persuade him to consult with a psychiatrist.

Strange behaviors that need to be watched out for include:

  • Regarding eating is not an important thing and not eating is a natural thing.
  • Always worrying about weight and being very afraid of being fat.
  • Mirror often.
  • Use supplements, herbal remedies, or laxatives for weight loss.
  • Tend to avoid eating with family or friends.

Causes of Eating Disorders

So far, the exact cause of eating disorders is unknown. But as with other mental disorders, eating disorders can occur due to a combination of several factors, including:

  • Genetic
    Some cases of eating disorders are found in people who have certain genes. This gene can facilitate the triggering of eating disorders.
  • Heredity
    In addition, eating disorders are also generally experienced by people who have parents or siblings with a history of the same disorder.
  • Biological
    Changes in chemicals in the brain can play a role in causing eating disorders.
  • Psychological (mental state)
    Eating disorders are often found in people who also experience anxiety disorders, depression, and obsessive compulsive disorder.

In addition to these causes, a number of conditions that can also increase a person’s risk of eating disorders are:

  • A teenager
    Adolescents are prone to eating disorders because they tend to pay more attention to their image or appearance.
  • Excessive dieting
    Hunger due to a diet that is too strict can affect the brain, so it actually creates an urge to overeat.
  • Stress
    Various problems that cause stress, both at work, family, and social relationships, can increase the risk of eating disorders.

Diagnosis of Eating Disorders

Someone can be said to have an eating disorder if the symptoms have been going on for at least 3 months. At the initial examination, the psychiatrist will dig deeper into the outlook, feelings, and eating habits of the patient to determine the patient’s attitude towards food and eating patterns.

If there is indeed an eating disorder, the psychiatrist will conduct another examination to determine the effects of the eating disorder.

The psychiatrist will check the height and weight, heart rate, and blood pressure of the patient. The psychiatrist will also observe the presence of dryness of the skin and hair and the fragility of the nails, which is the impact of bulimia. Further tests to be carried out include:

  • Blood and urine tests
    This examination aims to determine the number of blood cells, liver function, kidney function, and thyroid hormones.
  • Scanning
    X-rays can be taken to determine whether there is a fracture due to bone loss in anorexia or bulimia sufferers.
  • Electrocardiography
    Electrocardiography (ECG) is used to determine the patient’s heart condition.

Treatment of Eating Disorders

Management of eating disorders will involve a team consisting of doctors, psychiatrists, and nutritionists. The goal of treatment is to help patients re-implement a healthy diet. Handling efforts include:

This therapy can help sufferers to change bad eating habits into healthy eating patterns. There are two therapies that can be used, namely:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
    Cognitive behavioral therapy aims to recognize, understand, and change behavior, especially those related to diet.
  • Family-based therapy
    This therapy is carried out on children or adolescents involving the family. The aim is to ensure that the patient follows a healthy diet and maintains ideal body weight.


Drugs can not cure eating disorders. Even so, antidepressant and anti-anxiety drugs can be used to control the urge to overeat or prevent the urge to vomit food.

These drugs can also overcome excessive worries about certain foods or diets.

If the sufferer becomes malnourished, the doctor will advise the patient to be treated in the hospital.
Complications of Eating Disorders

Eating disorders can cause various complications. The more severe and prolonged eating disorders, the greater the risk of complications. Complications that can occur due to eating disorders are:

  • Stunted growth.
  • Mental disorders, such as depression and anxiety, even to the point of committing suicide.
  • Decreased school performance or work quality.
  • Disruption of social relations.
  • Impaired organ function.

Prevention of Eating Disorders

Although there is no sure way to prevent eating disorders, there are several efforts that can foster healthy eating behavior in adolescents, for example:

  • Prevent Diet Efforts
    To prevent this, parents can get used to eating with family and discuss the importance of a balanced diet with reasonable portions.
  • Take the time to talk
    This method can prevent dangerous lifestyles in adolescents. Talking to children can change their thinking so that they can understand healthy eating patterns.
  • Cultivating a Healthy Physical Appearance Image
    Parents need to develop self-confidence in children. In addition, do not mock or bad-mouth your own appearance in front of children, let alone ridicule the physical appearance of children, even if only joking.
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Let’s Start a Healthy Lifestyle

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), unhealthy eating patterns and lack of physical activity are the main global health risk factors. Increased production of processed foods, rapid urbanization and unhealthy lifestyles make you vulnerable to various types of health problems, such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Starting a healthy lifestyle can keep you from these health risks.

A healthy lifestyle is a long-term commitment with overall health benefits for your body and life. Improved physical, mental and emotional health will help improve the quality of your life and bring positive influence to the people around you.

Application of a Healthy Lifestyle

Implementing a healthy lifestyle needs to be adjusted to your age, gender, physical activity level, health conditions, and even your eating habits. The results will also vary, you cannot run or expect the same lifestyle changes as someone whose body condition or health is different from yours, for example following an idol model or actor.

Here are some ways to start a healthy lifestyle that you can immediately implement and make new habits or routines.

Know your body’s health status and make a treatment appointment if needed.

Do an annual check (medical check-up) that you may not have done or rarely do and also check the list of vaccinations that must be obtained. Some types of vaccinations are given more than once with a special schedule. Immediately make an appointment with a doctor if the results of routine health checks indicate abnormalities or there are vaccinations that must be done.

Know your body mass index (BMI) and measure your waist circumference to check if there are risk factors for diseases, such as obesity. You can do this in conjunction with routine checks. Also recognize your level of physical activity, for example how much activity is done in a week and what kind of intensity. By knowing the physical condition and health of your body, you can determine the next step of a healthy lifestyle change that is appropriate to do. Discuss with your doctor about the types of activities and eating patterns recommended for your condition.

Fixing your diet or diet and stopping bad habits.

Start keeping a diary that lists what foods you consume every day. Yes, that includes fried foods that you consume while waiting for the train schedule, for example. Make it without having any judgment. Remember, you do this to find out what needs to be changed from the old diet. You can’t switch to a healthy lifestyle if you don’t know any old habits that need to be removed or maintained. Discuss with your doctor and a nutritionist about the type, amount of food intake, and other dietary tips you need.

Increase physical activity and manage stress.

Adults are advised to set aside at least two and a half hours per week for aerobic activities (eg walking and running) with moderate intensity. Or you can set aside an hour and 15 minutes a week to do high-intensity aerobic activities, plus muscle strengthening activities, such as push-ups and sit-ups, at least two days a week. Make a calendar of physical activity and weekly targets that are flexible, realistic, and fun.

Maintaining mental health is also included in a healthy lifestyle. Tuck in activities like yoga and meditation to deal with stress. Determine ways or activities that you can do when stress and emotions strike, for example by running up and down stairs or staying quietly in the toilet to refocus. Breathing exercises not only remind you to be grateful but also re-evaluate the perspectives and decisions that need to be taken. Remember the positive things that happen in life and you will realize how many things you have achieved or have.

Improve sleep.

Make a regular sleep schedule. Try your device, computer or television to die at least two hours before the specified bedtime. Heavy exercise before bedtime is also not recommended. You can take a warm bath and drink a cup of tea to relax your body and mind, which helps you get to sleep quickly. Do not underestimate sleep disturbance, immediately see a doctor to get the appropriate treatment, if you have trouble sleeping.

Improve relationships with people around you.

Lifestyle changes are not just about diet and exercise, social interactions with those around you also contribute to your mental and emotional health. You do not need to equate all aspects of your life with your neighbors or friends, but you still need to take the time to socialize, both virtually and face to face. Improving relationships with others will provide comfort for each party. However, if you find it difficult to socialize, or if you are in an unhealthy relationship, then you need to seek help immediately. Your doctor will help you find out the source of the problem and how to overcome it.

Expand also do activities that stimulate brain creativity with those around you. The goodness of this activity began as a child coupled with formal education that was mutually supportive. According to neurologists, doing activities like this will have more effect on overall brain and body health than computer games that are played individually.

Although it is difficult to turn away from old habits, you need to realize that by making a healthy lifestyle a new habit, the risk of various diseases will also be reduced, including chronic diseases. Physical appearance improves, mental health is maintained, and your energy increases.

A healthy lifestyle also increases your chances of living longer. A study shows that the habit of walking for at least 30 minutes every day can reduce the risk of dying at an early age significantly. So what are you waiting for? Do not delay continuing to change your old lifestyle to a healthy lifestyle.

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Overeating Can Be A Sign of Binge Eating Disorder

Occasional overeating is a natural thing, for example when there is a celebration or when gathering with friends. However, if done continuously, overeating can indicate binge eating disorder. If left unchecked, this condition can adversely affect health.

Binge eating disorder is an eating disorder characterized by guilt and discomfort after overeating, and this is done repeatedly.

In the long run, binge eating disorder will not only interfere with physical health, but also cause anxiety, depression, and increase insecurity.

Causes of Binge Eating Disorder

Binge eating disorder usually occurs in adolescence to young adulthood. Eating disorders are more common in women than men.

The cause of the occurrence of binge eating disorder is not known with certainty. However, a study states that this eating disorder can be genetically inherited. Therefore, someone is more at risk of suffering from binge eating disorder if they have parents or siblings who experience this disorder.

In addition, negative feelings and dissatisfaction with body shape and weight, excessive dietary behavior, emotional trauma, depression, and anxiety disorders can also trigger this disorder.

Step Diagnosis of Binge Eating Disorder

As a first step, the doctor will ask questions about complaints experienced by patients and their lifestyle. After that, the doctor will conduct an examination to detect whether there are diseases or medical conditions that cause this disorder.

Your doctor may also check liver function, electrolytes, and digestive enzyme levels if you suspect complications due to eating disorders. Furthermore, patients suspected of having binge eating disorder can be referred to a psychologist or psychiatrist.

Based on the diagnosis guide to psychiatric disorders, there are several diagnostic criteria for binge eating disorder. Three or more of the criteria below must be met to diagnose someone suffering from binge eating disorder. These criteria include:

  • Eat very fast
  • Eat until you feel very full and the stomach feels uncomfortable
  • Eat in large quantities even though you don’t feel hungry
  • Eating alone because you feel embarrassed or guilty
  • Don’t like yourself

The severity of this disorder can be mild, moderate, to severe. A person can experience 1-3 episodes of disturbance every week for 3 months. However, if the disorder is severe, sufferers can experience 14 episodes of the disorder each week.

Unlike people with bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder sufferers don’t vomit up food, take laxatives, or exercise excessively to cover up the guilt from overeating.

People with this disorder can return to eating normally or limit food intake after overeating. However, excessive dieting can actually trigger a recurrence of binge eating episodes.

Treatment Options for Treating Binge Eating Disorder

The main purpose of handling binge eating disorder is to stop excessive eating habits, adopt a healthy eating pattern, and overcome complications that have arisen due to binge eating, such as obesity.

In addition, treatment methods are also used to overcome psychological problems, among others, by increasing the patient’s confidence and eliminate the sufferer’s negative thoughts about him.

The following are some of the most common therapeutic methods used to treat binge eating disorders:
1. Cognitive behavioral therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most commonly performed method and is believed to be the most effective way to deal with this disorder. Through this therapy, a psychologist or psychiatrist tries to analyze the relationship between negative thoughts that arise with eating behavior.

After the analysis is done, the psychologist or psychiatrist will determine the best treatment strategy to change the overeating behavior experienced by people with binge eating disorder.

Usually, sufferers will be trained to deal with fear or anxiety gradually until self-confidence appears. That way, patients are expected to be able to provide a positive response to conditions that can trigger it to overeat.

2. Interpersonal therapy (interpersonal psychotherapy)

This therapy is considered as a mechanism to overcome personal problems that have not been completed, such as grief, family conflict, or problems in the social environment.

The goal of interpersonal therapy is to find and recognize specific things related to overeating behavior and arrange treatment steps according to the cause. This therapy is generally carried out for 12-16 weeks.

Interpersonal therapy is considered effective for people with binge eating disorder who have low self confidence or have poor communication skills.

3. Dialectical behavioral therapy

This type of behavioral therapy is done when binge eating disorder appears as a form of emotional reaction to something that is incapable of being faced by sufferers.

Therefore, dialectical behavioral therapy aims to enable sufferers to better manage their emotions when facing problems. However, this therapy has not been proven to be more effective than cognitive or interpersonal behavioral therapy.

4. Weight management

Negative thoughts and feelings due to body weight that is not ideal or not as desired often triggers binge eating disorder. Therefore, people with this disorder are advised to undergo weight management.

This method can be done by exercising regularly and setting a healthy diet. Weight management can be done with the help of nutrition specialists and sports medicine specialists.

5. Medicines

Anticonvulsant drugs, antidepressants, lisdexamfetamine dimesylate, and orlistat can be used to treat this eating disorder. These drugs are given based on a psychiatrist’s prescription.

Besides being able to relieve the urge to overeat, these drugs can also reduce complaints caused by mental disorders, such as depression or anxiety disorders.

Steps to Prevent Binge Eating Disorder

The following are some steps you can take to overcome or avoid binge eating disorder:

  • Never skip breakfast, because this will further increase your appetite at lunch or dinner.
  • Apply a healthy diet by eating foods high in protein and healthy fats, and increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables.
  • Inadequate sleep and rest, because of lack of sleep will make your eating patterns become irregular.
  • Routine exercise to maintain ideal body weight, increase confidence in body shape, and foster a positive mindset.
  • Reduce stress, for example by meditation or mindfulness techniques, to control your eating behavior and help you love yourself more.
  • Record your daily eating patterns in a diary to make it easier for you to evaluate eating behavior and detect whether there is a relationship between mood or certain events with eating behavior.
  • Talk about eating disorders that you experience with family or close friends, so you can get emotional support to recover from the disorder.

Not all overeating behavior is a sign of binge eating disorder.

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The Importance of Knowing Normal Cholesterol Levels

High cholesterol levels can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and poor blood circulation. Knowing cholesterol levels in the blood is an effort to prevent this disease.

Cholesterol is a fat compound produced by various cells in the body, and about a quarter of the cholesterol produced in the body is produced by liver cells. Basically the body needs cholesterol to stay healthy.

Blood test

However, high cholesterol levels can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and poor blood circulation. Examination of cholesterol in the blood is useful for detecting these risks.

Cholesterol levels should be checked periodically in order to monitor overall health conditions. So, when should we start checking cholesterol levels?

If you smoke, are overweight, have high blood pressure, have diabetes and have a family with a history of heart disease, you should start testing from the age of 20.

However, if you do not smoke and do not have these diseases, the examination can begin at the age of 35 years. If the results are normal, you can check again every 5 years. But, if you have high cholesterol levels, you should check more often. Moreover, if you have diabetes, heart disease and kidney problems.

There are two types of cholesterol, namely good cholesterol and bad cholesterol. Good cholesterol (HDL-High Density Lipoprotein) functions to prevent atheroma or narrowing of blood vessels due to fat. While bad cholesterol (LDL-Low Density Lipoprotein) is one of the main causes of atheroma formation. In addition to good and bad cholesterol, there is another form of fat in the blood called triglycerides.

Atheroma itself is a trigger for heart disease, also known as atheroclerosis or hardening of the arteries. Atheroma is a fatty plaque that has accumulated in the artery walls of blood vessels. After months, even years, the plaque thickens and expands. At that time, the blood vessels are blocked and make blood flow is not smooth. This condition can cause heart attacks, strokes or other serious problems.

Everyone’s cholesterol levels are different, depending on what they consume. In addition, each person can have different cholesterol levels even though consuming the same food. In some people, high cholesterol can only be caused by hereditary factors.

Before checking cholesterol levels, you must first fast for 9-12 hours. Measurement of cholesterol levels is done by knowing how many milligrams (mg) of cholesterol are in each deciliter (dL) of blood.

The following are normal levels for the types of cholesterol that are in the blood.

Good cholesterol

The higher the level of good cholesterol or HDL, the better it will be for health. This is because HDL protects against heart disease. An HDL level of at least 60 mg / dL or more can help reduce the risk of heart disease. Conversely, HDL levels less than 40 mg / dL actually increase the risk of heart disease.

Bad cholesterol

Because of its bad nature, LDL or bad cholesterol should be at a low level or can be tolerated by the body, which is less than 100 mg / dL. The amount of LDL 100-129 mg / dL can be regarded as a tolerance threshold. If you exceed the amount of bad cholesterol can cause various health problems such as atheroma, heart disease, and stroke.

The amount of LDL 130-159 mg / dL can be said to enter the high threshold, and if the amount has reached 160-189 mg / dL it has entered a high level. While the amount of LDL 190 mg / dL and the rest, is already at a very high level.


This fat can also increase the risk of heart disease. So, the lower the triglyceride level, the better it is for health. The amount of triglyceride 150-199 mg / dL can be said to be at a high threshold, and the amount of 200 mg / dL or more including high triglyceride levels. Some people need treatment if they have triglyceride levels at both levels.

Total cholesterol

Total cholesterol is a combination of the amount of good cholesterol, bad cholesterol, and triglycerides in every deciliter of blood. Usually, by looking at total cholesterol and HDL alone can describe the general condition of your cholesterol level. However, if your total cholesterol is 200 mg / dL or more, or your HDL is less than 40 mg / dL, you need to do a complete cholesterol check that includes LDL and triglycerides.

Cholesterol levels less than 200 mg / dL can still be tolerated. Total cholesterol levels of 200-239 mg / dL have entered the high threshold. If the amount reaches 240 mg / dL or more, including high cholesterol levels.

Necessary Food

To maintain normal cholesterol levels, avoid foods that contain trans fats. This fat can be found in fried foods, margarine and snacks such as biscuits.

Here are some types of food that you can consume to reduce cholesterol levels in the blood.

  • Fish such as sardines, mackerel, salmon, and tuna, are rich in omega 3 which is good for the heart.
  • Oatmeal, rich in soluble fiber which can reduce bad cholesterol levels. Within a day, you need at least 5-10 grams of soluble fiber.
  • One and a half cup of cooked oatmeal contains about 6 grams of fiber. You can add fruit on top of the oatmeal porridge to enrich the flavor.
  • Nuts like almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, and others can reduce the risk of heart disease. You can replace fatty foods like cheese and meat with beans.
  • Olive oil, contains antioxidants that can reduce bad cholesterol levels. Use two tablespoons of olive oil a day for your salad or cooking.

Maintaining the intake of nutritious foods for the sake of limiting bad cholesterol levels is good, but the steps to live a healthy lifestyle are equally important. Start to stop bad old habits, such as smoking and drinking. Instead, start to get into the habit of exercising regularly.

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