Is Bingeing an Eating Disorder?
- POSTED ON: Aug 04, 2011


The dictionary definition of bingeing is:

to be immoderately self-indulgent and unrestrained;
to engage in excessive or uncontrolled indulgence in food or drink.

I personally agree that Bingeing isn’t usually
because of lack of self control and weakness.
We binge because of a complex interaction of habit,
brain chemistry, and external cues that signal us to eat.
This interaction can be overcome, but it's harder to do
and takes longer to change than most of us realize.

In the 1960s the Health Profession began attributing psychological reasons,
rather than physiological reasons to people who overeat to the point of obesity.
Since that time, there has been a tendency on the part of Health Professionals
to classify every kind of eating outside “moderate eating” as an “eating disorder”.
There are many reasons for this…and one of them is financial motivation.
Unless a behavior is labeled a “disorder” or and illness,
health insurance won’t pay for treatment.

You may call me cynical, but since “Binge Eating Disorder”
is far more common than anexoria and bulimia,
it has a much larger population base. This means more patients
to treat with Therapy, and/or Eating Disorder programs,
and more money and more profit for that specific Health Industry field.

Binge eating disorder first appeared in the American Psychiatric Association's
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM, in 1994.
Until recent times, “Binge Eating Disorder” has been categorized
under the umbrella term 'eating disorders not otherwise specified”,
or EDNOS for short. EDNOS includes a wide variety of disordered eating patterns.
It's often used for people who meet many of the symptoms of anorexia or bulimia
but not all. For example, a woman who meets all of the symptoms for anorexia,
but still menstruates regularly -- a criteria for an anorexia diagnosis --
would be diagnosed with an eating disorder not otherwise specified.

Health professionals admit that a Binge Eating Disorder is more
than simply eating too much food, and that many obese patients don't have it.
However still they claim that up to 5 percent of obese patients
and 30 percent of patients participating in weight loss programs
meet the criteria for binge eating disorder.

"It is important that clinicians and the public be aware that there are
substantial differences between an eating disorder such as
binge eating disorder and the common phenomenon of overeating,"
says B. Timothy Walsh, chair of the DSM-V Eating Disorders Work Group,
in a press release. "While overeating is a challenge for many Americans, 
recurrent binge eating is much less common and far more severe and
is associated with significant physical and psychological problems."

Proposed changes in the upcoming DSM-V, to be released in May 2013,
would categorize BED as a specific eating disorder.
The prop...

Weight Loss Surgery - 18 Years Ago
- POSTED ON: Mar 26, 2011

A gastric bypass...or stomach reduction, is exactly that.

18 years ago, when I chose to take this option, it was still considered experimental
and there were only a couple of doctors in California performing it.
I was required to travel to San Diego, which is 6 hr drive from my home, for that surgery,
and stay at a hotel there for at least 10 days immediately following my hospital release
with another person.  My husband accompanied me.

In my case, over 18 years ago, this was before laser surgery was common,
and my body was cut open vertically from chest to stomach...somewhere around 12+ inches.
My stomach was then cut apart into 2 pieces.
The top piece being a relatively small pouch,
and the bottom being the majority of the stomach.
At the place of division, the bottom part of the stomach was closed off and stapled shut.

As Food intake comes in through the top of the stomach,
and leaves though the bottom of the stomach,
the intestine connected to the bottom part of the stomach was cut away,
then brought up to the bottom of the small top part of the stomach and attached there.
The bottom part of the stomach remained inside the body, unattached to anything,
while the small top part of the stomach became the functioning body part.

In some of these surgeries, ....but not in my case......,
the intestine is shortened before it is reattached to the smaller, top portion of the stomach.
This interferes with the natural digestion process, so that ALL of one's food
...both calories and nutrients....are not absorbed but therefore pass through the body more quickly.
HOWEVER, in my case, all calories and nutrients in food are still absorbed.

A gastric bypass is, of course, major surgery,
although now laser surgery is commonly done,
which avoids the long vertical cut through the body.

It is painful, but my San Diego gastric bypass surgeon felt
that potential complications from pain medication outweighed the benefits.
So he did not routinely prescribe it.
In fact, a day or two after my hospital release,  I lay on my hotel bed in such pain,
that my husband phoned the doctors office for a pain prescription and was given one.
My husband returned from the pharmacy with TWO pills....TWO single pills.
That was the only pain medication I received after leaving the hospital.

 As my stomach healed, for several days I could only tolerate small sips of water.
Then I added jello and broth for several days.
On about day 8 or so, I was able to eat 1/2 a poached egg and a couple of bites of toast.
Eating more was physically impossible.

In those days, bariatric surgery was uncommon, and there were no large clinics
with nutritionists giving pre-surger...

Disordered Eating
- POSTED ON: Mar 19, 2011


Disordered eating is defined as
having eating habits that might present a risk to mental or physical health,
without exhibiting all the symptoms of a “recognized eating disorder”.

The term “eating disorder” is defined as
a mental illness; a brain problem that creates obsessive thoughts
and compulsive behaviors around food and the body.

Using the above definitions, it seems clear to me that mental health professionals
could manage to place almost every obese person somewhere in those categories,
which increases their marketing target and their potential financial profit.

It is the position of mental health professionals that
all people with disordered eating behaviors and
all people who exhibit symptoms of eating disorders
should receive psychological treatment to correct those conditions.

        I don't agree.

Therapy is helpful to relieve mental distress,
and if disordered eating or an eating disorder is the cause of extreme mental distress,
therapy can be beneficial when its purpose is to make people feel better about themselves..

However, in the case of “disordered eating” psychological treatment frequently
appears to merely be an effort to force people to conform to specific social norms of behavior.
And, perhaps, conformity isn’t always such a worthwhile goal.
Maybe other values are more important.

My opinions about “disordered eating” and “eating disorders” are somewhat controversial,
and over time I’ll be saying a great deal more on the subject.
But for now, I’ll leave you with the following song about disordered eating.


Dedicated, not Obsessed
- POSTED ON: Mar 04, 2011


Here's my Opinion.
Lighten up.
Having a "Food Obsession" is okay.

Personally, I have no desire to reduce my own "food obsession".
I'm the kind of person who really gets into anything I do, any interest I have.
So what if I'm not "normal" around food.
So what if food, and issues around food, are important to me.
So what if I spend a lot of my time thinking about food and/or weight.
I'm not going to waste my life shaming myself because of it.
Food is just as important or interesting as anything else...
....in fact it is the one thing that is vital for life to exist.

Just because a "saying" is old, doesn't make it right.. 
  I think "Eat to Live, not Live to Eat" is just a B.S. Value Judgment.
It really is just another way for people who don't share my values to negate them.
Am I REALLY going to let that part of Society legislate my morality?

Acceptance of oneself and one's personal interests apply generally,
in that much of modern Society now has a "live and let live" morality,
or "do what you want, as long as you don't' hurt others" ...
....but it makes a BIG EXCEPTION
about allowing a fat person to feel okay about food and their fat,
and it generally agrees that it's okay to tell a fat person
how they are SUPPOSED to feel and behave,
and to try to shame them into feeling guilty for what is natural to them.

Just watch one episode of the TV show, The Biggest Loser,
and see Society's current value judgments about the obese contestants.
Notice how the obese contestants buy into those negative Beliefs about themselves,
and how they state their belief that unless they are thin, they have no life.
Notice how they feel they deserve the ill treatment they get on that show,
including severe verbal abuse...and even (what I would call) physical abuse.

Then, when they lose weight, notice how they are encouraged to become
missionaries to the world and work to convert other fat people to their new beliefs.

"Obsessed is what the weak and lazy call the Dedicated"

Society in general, finds it acceptable for people to be obsessed with
exercise, sports, television shows, video games, hobbies, work, money,
shopping, relationships, family, sex, parenting, vacations, etc. etc. etc.
But, God Forbid, that anyone should feel okay about being obsessed with food.....

ESPECIALLY, if that person is overweight, obese, or very thin...
Only a "normal" sized female can acceptably demonstrate a strong interest in food...
and even that Acceptance is very limited.
Actually, this Quote is not exclusively related to food issues.
Dedicated, not Obsessed, could be an extreme interest and focus on Anything at all.

Terming someone as "Obsessed&q...

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