What Is Anorexia Nervosa?
Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder and psychological condition marked by extreme self-starvation due to a distorted body image. People with anorexia think they are fat, regardless of how much they weigh, and are obsessive about monitoring their weight. They may binge and purge, regularly refuse to eat, or eat only minimal amounts of food. In spite of the severe health risks associated with being severely underweight, those with anorexia refuse to see it as a problem.
Although young women account for most cases, anorexia can affect anyone, at any age. Anorexia is closely linked to perfectionism and depression, and those with the condition can and do starve themselves to death. Treatment generally includes individual and sometimes family or group therapy, but if anorexia becomes life threatening, the only recourse may be hospitalization and forced feeding.