An eating disorder primarily affecting girls, bulimia is characterized by a compulsion to binge (eat a large amount of food rapidly, usually in less than two hours) and then to purge (rid oneself of the food) by self-induced vomiting or the use of laxatives. Weight can fluctuate by as much as ten pounds during binge-and-purge cycles. Girls who suffer from bulimia are aware that their eating patterns are abnormal and they fear being unable to stop eating voluntarily. Binges are usually followed by a depressed mood and self-disgust. Bulimia leads to dehydration, hormonal imbalance, tooth and gum disease, and the depletion of important minerals, and it can have serious consequences for the adolescentís later physical development.

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Anorexia Nervosa


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