In bulimia, eating binges may occur as often as several times a day for many months. People with bulimia regularly consume large amounts of high-calorie foods, usually in secret. People can feel a lack of control over their eating during these episodes. Binges lead to self-disgust, which causes purging to prevent weight gain. Purging behavior used to compensate for the overeating includes forced vomiting, excessive use of laxatives or diuretics, fasting, excessive exercise, or a combination of these behaviors. Purging often brings a sense of relief.
People with bulimia are often at a healthy weight, but they may see themselves as being overweight. Because the person’s weight is usually average, other people may not notice this eating disorder. People with bulimia nervosa may be slightly underweight, average weight, or overweight.
What are the symptoms of Bulimia Nervosa?
The Symptoms of Bulimia include:
- Chronically inflamed and sore throat
- Swollen salivary glands in the neck and jaw area
- Worn tooth enamel and increasingly sensitive and decaying teeth as a result of exposure to stomach acid
- Acid reflux disorder and other gastrointestinal problems
- Intestinal distress and irritation from laxative abuse
- Severe dehydration from purging of fluids
- Electrolyte imbalance (too low or too high levels of sodium, calcium, potassium, and other minerals) which can lead to stroke or heart attack
- Compulsive exercise
- Suddenly eating large amounts of food or buying large quantities of food that disappear right away
- Regularly going to the bathroom right after meals
- Throwing away packages of laxatives, diet pills, emetics (drugs that cause vomiting), or diuretics