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PSYC11H3 (38)

biological disorder

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Maydianne Andrade

 The level of some hormones regulated by the hypothalamus such as cortisol are indeed abnormal in patients with anorexia; rather than causing the disorder however these hormonal abnormalities occur as a reulst of self starvation and levels return to normal following weight gain  Animals appear to have no hunger and become indifferent to food, whereas patients with anorexia continue to starve themselves despite being hungry and having an interest in food. Nor does the hypothalamic model account for body images disturbances or fear of becoming fat.  A dysfunctional hypothalamus thus does not seem a high likely factor in anorexia nervosa  Endogenous opiods- are substances produced by the body that reduce pain sensations, enhance mood and suppress appetite at least among those with low body weight.  Opiods are released during starvation and have been viewed as playing a role in both anorexia and bulimia.  Starvation among patients with anorexia may increase the levels of endogenous opiods resulting in positively reinforcing euphoric state  The excessive exercise seen among some patients with eating disorders would increase opiods and thus be reinforcing  Hypothesized that bulimia is medicated by low levels of endogenous opiods which are though to promote craving; a euphoric state is then produced by the ingestion of food thus reinforcing binging  Some data support the theory that endogenous opiods do play a role in eating disorder at least in bulimia  Found low levels of the endogenous opiod beta endorphin in patienst with bulimia; they also observed that the more severe cases of bulimia had the lowest levels of beta endorphin  Patients with bulimia have decreased regional mu-opiod receptor binding in the insular cortex and this is inversely correlated with fasting beh  Animal research has shown that serotonin promotes satiety (Feeling full) therefore it could be that the binges patients with bulimia result from a serotonin deficit which would cause them not to feel satisfied as they eat  Have identified low levels of serotonin metabolites in patients with bulimia and serotonin metabolites have been linked with the negative mood and self concept changes that precipitate binge episodes.  Patients with bulimia also show smaller responses to serotonin agonists (Chemicals that combine with receptors to initiate a reaction) again suggesting an under active serotonin system  When patients who had recovered from BN had their serotonin levels reduced they showed an increase in cognitions related to eating disorders such as feeling fat.  These data all suggest that a serotonin deficit may well be related to BN  This work focuses principally on brain mechanisms, relevant to hunger, eating and satiety and does little to account for other key features of both disorders particularly the intense fear or becoming fat Socio-cultural variables  Playboy magazine centrefolds became thinner between 1959 and 1978  Although one study found that the trend toward portrayals of increasing thinness was levelling off an analysis of playboy centrefolds were becoming even thinner. This study showed that models shown on the internet have unhealthy levels of thinness  The findings for female body size showed increasing thinness in keeping with unrealistic cultural pressures; in contrast the body size of the male Playgirl models had grown due to increases in muscularity and the body sizes of typical males had also grown but cuz of increases in body fat  Females still feel more pressure than males  Barbie look- increase bust by 12 inches, reduce waits by 10 and grow to over 7 feet in height  5 and 6 year olds exposed to Barbie images suffered lower body esteem and greater desire to achieve the thin ideal  confirmed that women who are portrayed as eating heavily are indeed seen as more masculine and less feminine than women who are portrayed ad eating light meals  the scarlet O’Hara effect refers to this phenomenon of eating lightly to project femininity  In gone wit
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