Eating Disorders News and Views: April 24, 2012

The following News and Views presented do not necessarily reflect the opinion or beliefs of Weighing The Facts.
Warning: Some articles may be triggering.

Internet Crackdown on Pro-anorexia Sites

Two years ago, when Madeleine Bowman began treatment for anorexia, she stopped looking at a pro-anorexia website that for years had served as her community and her source for ideas to nurture her secret illness.

But on Tuesday she was curious and decided to take a look. Fortunately, her login had expired.

Bowman 26, of New York, is in recovery from a decade-long battle with anorexia, she said.

She'd stumbled upon the website in eighth grade, after googling "eating disorders." Bowman had been skipping meals to lose weight and she wanted to find out if she was anorexic. She then visited the site often to find new ways to hide her condition from friends and family.

Given the many social aggregators that spread information to wider and wider audiences, Bowman says that today it would be even easier for someone to find their way to a pro-anorexia site.

That might not be the case for much longer.
Read Internet Crackdown in full.

Self-Harm Banned by Instagram

Instagram, the popular online photo-sharing service that was recently bought by Facebook for US$1 billion, is banning images and accounts that condone "self-harm" behavior such as eating disorders, cutting oneself, or committing suicide.

In a blog post Friday, the company said the following:

Going forward, we won't allow accounts, images, or hashtags dedicated to glorifying, promoting, or encouraging self-harm. Should users come across content of that nature, we recommend flagging the photo or flagging the user as a "Terms of Service" violation for our Support team to review.

It is important to note that this guideline does not extend to accounts created to constructively discuss, or document personal experiences that show any form of self-harm where the intention is recovery or open discussion. While we strongly encourage people to seek help for themselves or loved ones who are suffering, we understand the importance of communication as a form of support, in order to create awareness and to assist in recovery.
Read Banned in full.

Family of Padiham victim (17) warn other families of signs of anorexia

THE family of a talented and caring Padiham teenager who died battling anorexia have called for more to be done to raise awareness and help youngsters with the disease.

Charlotte Rose Seddon (17), a straight A student, died suddenly at home in Balliol Close 12 days after leaving the Priory, Altrincham, following four months of treatment. She weighed just 6st.

An inquest into her death at Burnley Coroner’s Court heard Charlotte’s heart failed after becoming small due to a lack of nutrients.

Pathologist Dr Jane Edwards, who carried out the post-mortem examination, said there would have been no symptoms or warning, despite Charlotte having regular health checks.
Read Warn Other Families in full.

K 06 Other Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder

Feeding and Eating Conditions Not Elsewhere Classified

These Conditions should be considered only if the individual has a feeding or eating disturbance judged to be of clinical significance that does not meet the criteria for any of the Feeding and Eating Disorders described above. The Conditions are described briefly; detailed criteria are not provided pending additional research. Although a diagnostic hierarchy (“trumping”) is not explicitly described, only a single condition should be assigned to an individual reflecting the description that best fits the individual's symptoms.

Sufficient data are not available at present to justify designating these Conditions’ as Disorders. However, these Conditions may be associated with levels of distress and/or impairment similar to those associated with the recognized Feeding and Eating Disorders, and may require intensive clinical intervention.
Read Other Specified in full.

Study: 16 Percent Increase in Men with Eating Disorders

New data from the NHS shows a shocking rise in the number of men with eating disorders (ED’s). Over the last year, there has been a 16% increase in the number of men and boys admitted to the hospital for eating disorders. While this is a huge jump, it may only hint at the true number of men suffering from an ED.

By its very nature, disordered eating is a secretive and guilty practice. Sufferers develop an unhealthy relationship with food over time and often go to great lengths to hide the symptoms of their condition. In particular, men have a difficult time admitting they have a problem because of the stigma that still surrounds eating disorders. Conditions such as anorexia and bulimia are often seen as a women’s disease and may be labeled “unmanly”.
Read 16% Increase in full. 

Image is everything: Unfortunately, that's the case in our society

Half the girls in this country between the ages of 11 and 13 believe they are fat.

That startling statistic comes from The Renfrew Center Foundation for Eating Disorders in Philadelphia and echoes what others say about the way girls think about food and their bodies.

Some young women go on fad diets or exercise binges at a time in their lives when they should be enjoying childhood and succeeding in school. Instead, they are overly preoccupied with their appearance — or better said, what they think they should look like.
Read Half The Girls in full.

Instagram, Pinterest latest to ban 'thinspo,' other 'self-harm' content

Many online communities have seen issues with "thispo" or "thinspiration" content, promotion anorexia or bulemia, and Instagram, Pintarest, and Tumblr are among services which have responded by banning "self-harm content," with Instagram the latest.

Blogging service Tumblr made its move in February, saying that while it is ”deeply committed to supporting and defending our users’ freedom of speech, [but] we do draw some limits.”
Read Latest to Ban in full

Binge Eating Disorder Continues to Rise Among Men

About 8 million men and women suffer from Binge Eating Disorder (BED), which is nearly three times the amount of those affected by Anorexia and Bulimia. With as many men affected by BED as women, The Eating Disorder Center of Denver (EDCD) aims to offer a treatment program that is accommodating and effective for both genders.

A newly recognized condition, those suffering from BED eat more than normal meal portions, feel a loss of control when eating and do not purge after binging.

Men are traditionally underrepresented in clinical trials for BED that gauge the effectiveness of treatments and are often overlooked when developing treatment programs, according to Dr. Tamara Pryor, EDCD clinical director.
Read BED Continues to Rise in full.

Demi Lovato: Bullies Sparked Bulimia

Demi Lovato's bulimia was sparked by school bullies who branded her 'fat'.

The 20-year-old former Disney star - who was admitted to rehab in 2010 for help with an eating disorder, self-harm and depression - believes her problems started at the tender age of 12.

Talking about her tormentors, she said: 'They called me a whore and told me I was fat and ugly. I shouldn't have listened, but I took it to heart and it hurt. I thought maybe I didn't have friends because I was too fat.'
Read Demi Lovato Bullies in full.

Anorexia May Be Caused By Brain Abnormality

London, April 22 (ANI): A new study has suggested that anorexia may be triggered by a defect in the brain, offering new hope that the potentially deadly eating disorder can be treated.

The pioneering research, carried out on anorexics as young as eight and using powerful new brain-imaging techniques, could lead to different treatments.

Anorexia is defined as a body weight at least 15 per cent below that expected, the Daily Express reported.

"We believe subtle problems in early brain development make patients susceptible to anorexia. We need to re-examine other mental health problems," said Psychologist Dr Ian Frampton of Exeter University, one of two researchers leading the study.
Read Anorexia Brain in full.

Pro-Anorexia 'Thinspiration' Photos Shouldn't Be Banned from Social Media

First, they came for the thinspiration pictures.

Internet censors are always agitating to ban one thing or another, and it's rarely the same thing twice. Instead, there's a revolving carousel of images that are deemed in succession to be beyond even the online pale. Each one seems to present a plausible occasion for, this once, curtailing free speech. The king wearing a pig snout. A swastika. Naked children.

Right now it's semi-naked women that the distressed classes want to cover up -- the very images on which the entirety of Western visual culture is founded.

This time, the anxiety about graven images has nothing to do with how they might arouse desire in men. We're afraid of what's known as " thinspiration," it seems, because glamorous photos of very skinny women, together with admiring captions, might arouse self-loathing in women, and thereby inspire self-mortification, and in particular anorexia.
Read Shouldn't Be Banned in full.

Scots man reveals his battle with anorexia as number of sufferers rise 

JONATHAN Hill has a year to start eating or he could die.
That is the stark warning he was given by doctors trying to help him overcome anorexia.
And he is an example of a worrying trend, with a rising number of males fighting the disorder which is usually associated with young women.
Jonathan, 29, has battled an eating disorder since he was 12.
His weight is currently six and a half stone – he used to be as low as four and a half – and hopes he is doing enough to see his fourth decade.
“I’ve accepted I’ll always have this illness. I won’t get better,” said Jonathan.
Read Scots Man in full.