Treatment for Anorexia Nervosa

Written by on July 13, 2012 in Health - 1 Comment | Print this page

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Treatment for Anorexia Nervosa

In our last post, we spoke about anorexia nervosa. This is a condition that haunts some pre-teen and teenage girls who are concerned about social acceptance. These young ladies want to be thin and attractive and often starve themselves to fit in with what they feel in acceptable socially. Anorexia is a plague that can cause much anguish physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Treatment for Anorexia Nervosa

Girls suffering from anorexia require intensive long-term treatment. This may take place in an outpatient setting. In severe cases, hospitalization may be necessary as intravenous nutritional therapy may be required. A therapy team usually consists of a psychiatrist, a dietitian and a doctor experienced in problems relating to eating disorders. The team’s greatest challenge is to get the patient to overcome her distorted self-image of being fat. They must then help her to overcome her fear of consuming food. Most anorexics are defensive about their eating habits and treating them can be a challenge.

Early steps of treatment begin with offering the patient small portions of nutritious and easily digestible foods. Eggs, custards, soups and smoothies are good for starters. Portion size and the variety of foods are gradually increased to achieve a steady weight gain. A gain of between 1-3 pounds per week is a safe and attainable goal when malnutrition must be corrected. Doctors strive for a varied diet that provide adequate protein for rebuilding lost lean tissue, carbohydrate for energy, and a moderate amount of fat for extra calories. A good multivitamin may be given at this time. A calorie-enriched liquid supplement may also be subscribed by the treatment team. Diet soft drinks, low-calorie diet foods and coffee are withheld. Once the patient has sufficient weight gain and begins eating normally, close monitoring may be necessary as relapses often occur. Group therapy is recommended to build self-esteem.

Foods for Treating Anorexia Naturally

Anorexia can be treated at home if the case is not extreme. Improved digestion and increased appetite should be the focus and will lead to overall body  health. Home remedies can be very effective if applied consistently. There are also no side effects. The following foods are recommended for correcting problems with anorexia:

  • Apples — One a day helps with digestion and increases appetite.
  • Oranges — Cleanses and corrects the digestive system.
  • Lemons — Cleanses and tones the digestive system.
  • Garlic — Cleanses the digestive tract and increases appetite.
  • Ginger — Increases the appetite.
  • Pineapple — Increases the appetite.
  • Mint — Increases the appetite.

Water is also a great cleanser. Warm water cleanses the digestive tract. Lemon or mint can be added to the water to aid digestion. The herb St. John’s wort has been used worldwide to balance mood and treat depression.

Do you know of any natural remedies for treating anorexia nervosa? Please feel free to share below.

Sources:

Medicine Net

WebMD

 

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About the Author

Loraine R. Dégraff

Loraine is a passionate health and wellness writer and is particularly interested in working with the body through diet and nutrition. She currently lives in Queens, NY with her husband and 5 children and would love to talk "health" with you. View all posts with Health Tips.