Anorexia Nervosa:

Why Do Some People Starve Themselves?



This paper has been written for the health professional in the school and community, and others who come into contact with the anorexic. Although hardly a rare disease today, misinformation and fear continue to surround anorexia nervosa. Few people, including health professionals, are well informed about the illness, and this ignorance sometimes impairs early detection and effective treatment of the problem. Perhaps, this paper will help make the disorder more comprehensible and less frightening for both sufferers and health professionals in the school and community. Among other things, it will draw implications for health education and attempt to answer the following questions: What is anorexia nervosa? How prevalent is it? What individuals are at high risk? How does a person become anorexic? What treatment programs work? Can the problem be prevented?