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Ch. 15 - Eating disorders

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University of Toronto St. George

CH. 15: Eating Disorders Oct. 27, 2009 The Obesity Epidemic - 64% of American adults are overweight (BMI>25) or obese (BMI>30) - 25% of American children are overweight or obese 13% of Canadian children are now considered obese - The prevalence has doubled over the past two decades **BMI = body mass index (takes both weight and height into account but not perfectly accurate) **anorexic people have a BMI < 17.5 Rates of Obesity in Children Rates of obesity have really increased over time Rates tend to be higher in boys Obesity is - Associated with health problems (e.g. CV disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol) Associated with availability of fast foods (which are cheap) and certain activities (like video games, text messaging) Hard to treat - Obesity costs the US 100 billion dollars annually and causes 300 000 deaths annually - Obesity itself is not a mental disorder, though it can be the result of one The eating disorder epidemic - There has been a parallel increase in the prevalence of dysfunctional eating practices, including eating disorders, and unhealthy weight loss - More prevalent in Westernized cultures - Westernized culture simultaneously promotes the thin ideal (models) and excessive consumption (bigger portion sizes) Some people do it not to lose weight, but rather as an ideal of being able to resist food being in control of oneself No appetite A village was found that had no access to TV or connection to the Western world, and there were NO eating disorders once TV was introduced, the rates rose
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