Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
Can you explain what specifically is involved in anorexia and bulimia?
A: Anorexia is medically defined as a lack of appetite for food
or a hysterical avoidance of food. This condition is particularly
prevalent among American young women obsessed with being thin. There is
usually an extreme loss of weight, lack of menstruation, fatigue,
depression, and hypoglycemic patterns.
Bulimia is closely related to anorexia, a condition in which one binges
then purges, usually by vomiting. Emotional factors play a large part
in both of these conditions.