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Males and females can both experience body/weight dissatisfaction…but how does this dissatisfaction vary across males and females?

Nearly 50 percent of adolescent girls and 20 percent of adolescent boys diet to control their weight. Weight concerns are so great that 13.4 percent of girls and 7.1 percent of boys have engaged in disordered eating patterns; Body dissatisfaction among men ranges from 9.0 percent to 28.4 percent according to various studies, Weight dissatisfaction in men and boys most frequently involves a desire to be heavier and more muscular; Weight and body shape concerns are now common not only among young white women and girls (the group most affected by eating disorders) but also among older women and members of ethnic minorities because of social emphasis on thinness


What problems are commonly comorbid with anorexia?

Depression, anxiety, impulse control problems, loss of sexual interest, and substance use often occur concurrently with anorexia nervosa


How do anorexia and bulimia compare in terms of prevalence?

Bulimia is much more prevalent than anorexia nervosa. Up to 2.6 percent of women have bulimia at some point in their lifetime, and an additional 10 percent of women report some symptoms but do not meet all the criteria for the diagnosis. The incidence of bulimia appears to be increasing, particularly in urban areas. Fewer men and boys exhibit the disorder, presumably because there is less cultural pressure for them to remain thin; however, up to 10 percent of those affected by this disorder are males


What is the most common eating disorder diagnosis?

The category other specified feeding or eating disorders includes seriously dis- turbed eating patterns that do not fully meet the criteria for anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or binge-eating disorder. This is the most commonly diagnosed eating disorder and accounts for up to 30 percent of eating disorder diagnosis


How do ghrelin and leptin factor into etiology of eating disorders?

Ghrelin, a gastrointestinal hormone capable of stimulating hunger, regulating taste sensation, and increasing interest in food, is also a focus of research. When the appetitive circuitry is operating normally, ghrelin levels rise before meals and decrease after eating. Ghrelin works in conjunction with leptin, a hormone that signals satiety and suppresses appetite. Abnormalities in these hormones have been found in those with eating disorders. Manipulating ghrelin levels as a method of promoting weight gain in those with anorexia nervosa or decreasing interest in food for those with who eat excessively is being explored as a mechanism for treating obesity and eating disorders


What is BMI, and at what threshold is someone considered “obese?”

Obesity is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) greater than 30. Our BMI, an estimate of our body fat, is calcu- lated based on our height and weight


What percent of adult Americans are considered obese?

According to BMI standards, 68 percent of U.S. adults are overweight, which includes 35 percent who are obese


What health problems are associated with obesity?

Being overweight or obese increases the risk of high cholesterol and high triglyceride levels, type 2 diabetes, cancer, coronary heart disease, stroke, gall- bladder disease, arthritis, sleep apnea, and respiratory problems


How does the “thrifty genotype” hypothesis relate to obesity?

Points to the role of both genetics and the environment in accounting for the rapid rise in obesity. According to this perspective, certain genes helped our ancestors survive famines by storing body fat. These same genes, however, may be dysfunctional in an environment in which high-fat foods are now plentiful; Although “thrifty” genes and access to foods can account for some cases of obesity, other factors must be involved, because rates of obesity also vary according to variables such as class, gender, and race or ethnicity.