College Eating Disorders STRESS

Taken from the August 25, 2010 Edition of PsychCentral News:

Beginning college is a landmark event for many young people and a key step toward adulthood. However, it can also be an episode that pushes some into a dangerous battle with eating disorders.
Remember....even new POSITIVE events are processed by the brain as stressful.

Common signs of an eating disorder include:
-A preoccupation with calculating calories, fat grams and carbohydrate grams
-A need to weigh oneself more than once a day
-Allowing the numbers on the scale to determine mood
-Exercising, skipping meals or purging after overeating
-Exercising to burn calories rather than for health or for fun
-An inability to stop eating once eating begins
-Eating in secret
-Feeling guilty, ashamed or disgusted after overeating
-Basing self-worth on looks or weight
-Worrying continuously about weight and body shape
-Abusing diet pills or laxatives

Eating disorders can lead to long-term health problems, and even death.

**This information is not new to most of us here, but I think it's important for those who are new, and for all of us to remember from time to time.

Thanks...Jan ♥

Interesting research... my ED did in fact start during college and most of what you posted fits me to a tee during that time...

I already knew that information but I want to put in that it was my sophomore year of college- new campus, strict scheduling, new roommate, away from boyfriend for 1st time- that started my relapse. Just the thought of this happening started my relapse this past summer.

Plus in all my nursing books, we are learning about subjective(patients point of view) and objective(outer signs, tests, etc.) data when assessing patients. They seem to use the same example a lot for gaps in subjective and objective data. The example is of a college girl who goes to the school nurse because her roommate is worried. She says she exercises often for health and is eating very healthy. She doesn't think she is a bad weight. But the objective data shows all the signs of anorexia.

Just thought I would connect my knowledge with Jans :)

Thanks for the information


Thank you for your input Allee!! Makes sense...♥
[great pic, by the way!]
Jan ♥

yes, even a POSITIVE change can stress.
when i began my college career, i told myself that things would be DIFFERENT, that i could be ANYONE i wanted to be... but? wherever go, there you are.

i had several tricks that had perhaps become conditioned responses. unable to break certain cycles, realizing that life with a COMMUNITY bathroom just might KILL ME, and not having the watchful eyes of my family, i developed new oddities.

i might have believed that these new tricks weren't tricks but that they were actually better coping skills. but when the college staff becomes personally involved in your life- threatening to call parents and making hospital arrangements...i was devastated to see that my coping skills were REALLY just different tricks.

yeah, it was SUPER difficult to find a balance, esp when i was so young and used to my family's watching. the freedom in college was like a breath of fresh air. i could go through MY motions, fall under the radar, and remain virtually undetected. i went through all sorts of strange *stages*- can't chew anything. only eat super small things. ate with chopsticks only for a while. cheered, exercise classes, running, working out, hiking, and biking. people saw me as odd but energetic. i was envied for my energy.

falling under the radar SUCKED. super depressed. wouldn't come out of my room. barely ate at all. skipped my classes...again b/c i wouldn't come out of my room. my retreating behavior and appearance were no longer just simply odd. in my attempt to fall off the face of the earth, i brought about more attention to myself by keeping my door closed than if i'd just at least pretended to go through the motions.

young, new freedom, lots of change, wanting to re-invent myself... it's sad, really. depression is unavoidable when you're starved. bigger clothes under which to hide, becoming the perpetual NO-SHOW, crying in my room wanting to die-- staying away from people seemed the only way to continue hiding...but it was the very thing that caused all the attention. hmmmmm.

in high school, i never said a word... nor did i in college, but other girls talked... i learned a lot of tricks from this new sisterhood. again, i never said a word, but i listened more carefully than most- and was smaller than most. i'm sure the sisterhood accepted me as one of them as i performed new tricks, starved myself horribly, and lied to myself thinking i was in some sort of STEALTH mode.

thanks for this jan... a lot of what i remember is inaccurate- b/c i told myself to never think about certain aspects of college- and i in fact have buried a lot of it as if it never happened. this helps to clear my memory a bit and gives me a place to put the memory- a sense of belonging...

Amy..thank you for continuing to share and open yourself to us all.
Change is stressful..positive as well as negative. Recovery is about learning to use new coping tools and to move beyond the so hard, but very possible!! HUGS..Jan ♥

thank you thank you jan-----

although my college career was so long ago, i'm finding that it continues to be directly related to the development of my shapeshifting ablities.

when i recall my college years, i recall dances and parties, classes and homework, homecoming, etc... i have never spoken of what i have written here. i won't even allow myself to THINK about it like that. i hate it. it has always scared me. so i redefined a lot of it, hid a lot of it from myself, and have lied to myself until i believed it.

i'm grateful for this opportunity to unearth some of my hidden, redefined truths. thank you for giving me a place to PUT some of it.