The recent researches on eating disorders studies done by Stanford, (2002); McCabe, (2002); Reiger, (2005) and Orosan, (2008) have developed a more complex study that investigated perceptions between individual and those of the other sex; add emphasis to increased body dissatisfaction as risk factor for developing eating disorders. For instance many women within the society today assume that members of the other sex (male) desire women with smaller bodies rather than larger ones.
In other words, subsequent messages from peers and sex preferences have been rated as significant factors in the dissatisfaction body image for females by these studies. Empirically, the US cultures today place high standard on body image and attractiveness as important factors in measuring the individual’s success to ladies. To this effect, Reiger, (2008) reiterates that “unless our media network in US changes the model’s beauty outlook in their adverts; then, fight against disorders of eating are in vain” The second category of psychological researchers and their studies (Chandler, 1997; Gleaves, et al. , 2000; Wilfley, et al.
, 1996; Herzberger, 1998; Halpern, et al. , 1999) are guided by notion that body image and weight dissatisfaction is concerned with development of the eating disorders. The third category, are guided by concerns that eating disorders develop on the basis of impact of cultural norms, perceptions and expectations have on the value of beauty and attractiveness in western industrial nations (Kemper, 1996; McCabe, 2002; Williams & Cororve, 2000; Orosan, 2005). Other works of researchers Molloy & Herzberger, (1998); inducate that peer and family perceptions are as a drive for females to have ideal body in accordance to their opinions.
This is attributed to be a major factor in the development of disturbed body image perception in females in society. Additionally, male or sex peer preferences (Molloy & Herzberger, 1998) as reveled in the study are the cause for developing negative body image perception for women leading to development of disordered eating behaviors and attitudes. Evidently, as established by Molloy & Herzberger, (1998); Blacks women are encouraged to have larger bodies because Blacks men prefer larger women‘s bodies. In addition to that, Blacks males also reported a desire for their female peers to gain weight and increase their body size.
This and many other examples are as an indicator of how opposite sex or peers perception is seen as a drive for females to have a good and attractive body image that exposes them to risk of developing eating disorders. Most recent research by researchers like Nielsen, (2000); Arriaza & Mann, (2001); Topping, (2001); conducted their studies guided by the theoretical orientation of ethnic groups to study the prevalence of eating disordered behaviors and attitudes, body image concerns and eating disorders.
For instance the study with Asian-American women was conducted by Kambara et al, (1998), African-American women by Nielsen, (2000), Asian by Tsai et al. , (2003) and white (Cachelin et al. , 2001). These studies indicated prevalence of eating disordered behaviors and attitudes, body image concerns and eating disorders among varied ethnic groups. The conclusion reached after study conducted with samples of all these ethnically diverse groups, depicted they exhibit eating disordered behaviors and attitudes, body image concerns and eating disorders and not immune.
In addition to this, these studies revealed that women who associate, identify with and interact with white majority culture are more likely to adopt whites’ attitudes about dieting excessively and being extremely thin like African American women. Therefore, may be at risk for developing disordered eating behavior and attitudes. Therefore, these literatures focus on the idea that society’s perception and ethnic identity have relationship to beauty, success and acceptance is gauged on the body thinness of a woman.
Thus, this category of study and associated literature place emphasis on the fact that the societal set standard is the cause of eating disorders. Thus, the following section focus on the literature of these eating disorders. Categorization of Eating Disorders According to Franko (1998); Orosan (2005); Reiger (2008), eating disorders are categorized into three diagnostic classes. These classes are: Bulimia Nervosa, Anorexia Nervosa and eating disorders not otherwise specified like binge eating disorder or any other disorder that differs from Anorexia or Bulimia.
However, the three categories of the eating disorders exclude obesity. In this research paper, the review of literature on the categorization shall major on two: Bulimia Nervosa and Anorexia Nervosa. Anorexia Nervosa This is an eating disorder characterized by a refusal to maintain a minimally normal bodyweight by a patient through starving and excessive exercises. This disorder occurs primarily among girls and women who account up to 90%. The condition is brought about by emotional disorders that lead to anorexic to worry excessively about the appearance of his or her body.
Anorexia Nervosa is into two categories; whereby one is characterized by strict dieting and exercising, while second category is inclusive of binging and purging (Center for the Study of Anorexia and Bulimia, 2006). Sadly, Studies indicate that the disorder is increasing among women of all races and social classes in the US. Causes Medical or pathological causes for the disorder are not well established (Rachel, 2002, pp. 412), thus; real or exact cause of disorder is unknown. However its cause is based upon combination of social, psychological, occupational and genetic risk factors.
Social factors The fact that society, especially in America, places high value on thinness among women as consideration for success and beauty, hence, young female adults considers being slender is to achieve this societal standard. Furthermore, the imagery of the top models, great advertisement, gorgeous girls that seem to attract men in movies or exclusive dates appears to be thin. Thus, media such as magazines, TV and movies reinforces such stereotypes; hence most girls become anorexic as a form of copy-cat behavior (Rachel, 2002, pp. 112). Occupational Goals factors
There are varied occupation and professions that expects women to be slender in order to fit into. Therefore a young woman in society in pursuit of such career as actresses, dancers, gymnast and fashion models may decide to pursue an extreme weight-loss program. Genetic and Biological Factors In some cases observed Anorexia Nervosa seems to run in some families. Women whose mothers or sisters have the disorder are more likely to develop the condition than those who do not have relatives with Anorexia Nervosa. Psychological Factors On psychological causes it has a premise on the individual’s view of the world.
For instance fear of growing up. Thus, becoming anorexic, a young girl may be able to remain a child. While on the other hand gymnasts, female athletes, actresses and dancers often feel pressure to be very thin. Other theories that can explain psychological factors are reaction to sexual assault or abuse, a desire to remain weak and passive in the belief that men will find this attractive, A drive to be perfect in every part of life, whether it be school work or weight control and in some cases Biological or psychological problems caused by incorrect feeding experiences at an early age.
Diagnosis Diagnosing Anorexia Nervosa remains a daunting challenge, since those who have developed the disorder deny it. However, medical history, blood tests, urinalysis combined with symptoms eliminates other possibilities. In addition to that doctors uses eating attitude test and eating disorder test to verify the disorder from psychiatric conditions. Treatment Options Treatment options are difficult and quite complicated. However there are two kinds that deal with immediate problems as well as long-range ones. It can be treated with psychiatrists or psychologists or dietitians.
Serious cases need hospital treatment that may require patient to be force-fed or given the opportunity to eat on a more normal schedule (Rachel, 2002, pp. 412). Secondly, there is exposure to counseling aimed at making the patient to understand the reasons for his or her disorder. For less serious cases there is an out patient treatment. This involves counseling on an individual basis or in groups and some cases family therapy. Drugs are only used to treat the psychological aspect of Anorexia Nervosa like depression and anxiety.
So that the patient can less depressed, less anxious, and better able to think clearly about his or her problems. Bulimia Nervosa This is an Eating disorder that is characterized by repeated episodes of binge eating by a patient, which is followed by inappropriate compensatory behaviors such as laxative misuse or self-induced vomiting. It is a serious and some times life-threatening eating disorder that affects primarily young women. Bulimics are considered to have a mental disorder. Thus Bulimia Nervosa is considered to be a psychiatric or mental disorder (Center for the Study of Anorexia and Bulimia, 2006).
Causes The exact cause is unknown, but genetic and social factors are believed to be the possible causes. In addition to that, there appear to be family trends. Therefore if an adult within the family has got Bulimia Nervosa, there are high chances of a child within that family to develop the disorder. Despite al these possible cause, social pressure reinforced by advertisements, television programs, and motion pictures which are full of images depicting beautiful, successful women who are very thin is great cause. Diagnosis
It is a difficult task to diagnose Bulimia Nervosa since patients usually try very had to hide their conditions. However the sooner the disorder is diagnosed the better to treat it, thus early diagnosis is good. On this view, diagnosis is based on the two key symptoms of Bulimia Nervosa: Excessive concern about body weight along with repeated episodes of binging and purging. In addition the medical personnel need to undertake medical history, blood tests, urinalysis combined with symptoms eliminates other possibilities of similar conditions. Treatment Options
Approach to treating Bulimia Nervosa is combination of drugs and counseling. Whereby, drugs like anti-depressants help the patient deal with her mental concerns. In terms of counseling; individual, family and group based are needed in treatment of Bulimia Nervosa. Moreover, Light therapy that uses artificial light to improve a patient’s mood is helpful, especially during winter months. Other treatment options are hydrotherapy and massage that facilitates a patient to feel better about the shape and appearance of her body (Rachel, 2002, pp. 412). RESULTS
Research results shall be based on the collected data analysis in accordance with research questions. Therefore, sub section of data analysis within this section shall analyze the results in accordance with formulated research questions. Data Analysis The formulated research questions purpose to examine the relationship between: (1) body image discrepancy among young female adults, (2) eating disorders using body dissatisfaction and drive for thinness and (3) ethnic identity. In addition to that, age, race, socioeconomic status variables shall be examined. Thereafter, the MANOVA (multivariate analysis of variance) (Reiger, 2008, p.
269), shall be used as overall statistical test of the effects of socioeconomic status, age, and race on Ethnic identity, body dissatisfaction and drive for thinness. The result shall be analyzed in accordance with research questions in the following preceding order. Research Questions Research question one; is there relationship between ethnic identity, attitudes and behaviors measured by Drive for thinness and Body dissatisfaction to development of eating disorders? After which correlation analyses for both black and white participants will be used to determine the outcome.
The order follows for all five research questions respectively. However, to my opinion the outcomes may not reflect the relationship between disordered eating behavior and age factor. But, on the basis of racial groups score, I expect the Black participants to score low on subscale of disordered eating measure and high on the measure of ethnic identity as opposed to White participants. This is in accordance with my review of literature on the passed studies which I have qualitatively analyzed. DISCUSSION Reference BBC News, (22nd APRIL, 2008) “Professor, 49, died from anorexia”, Retrieved on 23rd April, 2008.
Center for study Anorexia and Bulimia Study. (2006). Basic facts, New York; 1 W. 91st Street. Carolyn, C. (1999). The Eating Disorder Sourcebook. Lincolnwood: Lowell House press. Foulks, E. (1998). Personality disorders and culture: Clinical and conceptual interactions. New York: Wiley. Franko, D. (1998). The prevention of eating disorders: Empirical, methodological, and conceptual considerations. Boston, Blackwell. Lask, B. & Bryant-Waugh, R. (2000). Studies of Anorexia Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders in Childhood and Adolescence. Hove: Psychology Press Money, J. (1994).
The concepts of gender identity disorder in childhood and adolescence. Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy 20 Orosan Peter, (2005), Assessment of body image in eating disorders; New York Routledge Rachel. K. (2002), Everything You Need to Know about Eating Disorders. New York: The Rosen. Regard. A. (2008). “Limitations of diagnostic criteria and assessment instruments for mental disorders” Archives of General Psychiatry, vol. 55, pp. 109 Schwartz, R. C. , (1987) Working with “Internal and External” Families in the Treatment of Bulimia. Family Relations, Vol. 36, No. 3 APPENDIX