Handling Dominant Eating Disorders In New Zealand – Food&Nutrition Example

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"Handling Dominant Eating Disorders In New Zealand" is a remarkable example of a paper on food and nutrition. Eating disorders are not hard to detect, mainly when there is a widespread general awareness of the symptoms of the problem. Any person in the family or neighborhood, who loses his or her control whenever around food, is obsessed about food, body shape, and weight, and is always worried about the last and the next meal, apparently has an eating disorder (Hay et al, 2014, p. 978). In New Zealand, there are several examples of eating disorders in the urban youth and surprisingly, teenagers.

Several advertising campaigns of garments and dieting capsules have forced youngsters especially women into feeling odd about their weight (Theunissen, 2012). As a result, one finds peculiar cases of misunderstanding towards one’ s own body shape and personality and a loss of control near food. Two common problems identified in New Zealand Two very common eating disorders identified in New Zealand include anorexia nervosa and binge eating disorder. Anorexia causes suicidal thoughts: Anorexia nervosa is the typical psychological condition wherein a person stops eating and avoids food because he or she thinks that there is too much fat on the body.

This condition has recorded high mortality rates (EDANZ, 2014). The assumption that one is fat is more than often wrong and even when at normal health, the person avoids eating and ends up forcibly losing eight. Such weight loss is unhealthy and can lead to severe medical and psychological symptoms. People suffering from anorexia have suicidal thoughts and fall into depression.   Binge causes have chances of deterioration: Binge eating disorder is a little different since it involves a person eating a lot of food in a short interval of time, mainly two hours, and following the food intake with vomiting and laxative treatment to avoid weight gain.

While taking laxatives and making oneself vomit are conscious decisions, intake of a large amount of food happens in an out of control fashion. As a result, the person feels worried about weight gain after the food has been eaten and subjects themselves to medication, compulsive exercises, and vomiting. The most common outcome of the disorder, however, is social stigma and isolation, which occur on part of the individual and also on part of the society (Eating Disorders – Binge Eating, 2014) Two Main Recommendations                       There have been many recommendations to treat and control the occurrence of eating disorders in people in different communities.

The impact of eating disorders on the psychology of the patients is highly dangerous in a few cases since it has been noticed that patients tend to become depressed and have suicidal thoughts (Klump et al. , 2009, p. 99;  Steinhausen, 2009, p. 225), both of which affect their mental and physical stability, whilst also affecting family and friends.

Two major recommendations made by the RANZCP (Hay et al, 2014) and NICE (2004) include the psychological therapy of patients in two different forms. These are as follows: Psychosocial therapy:                       Getting the individual to realize the truth about his condition, understanding the root cause of his ill health, weakness, and depression, and what makes him perceive himself as fat or hungry is important in this therapy. The most important terms of the therapy include interaction with similar patients, social awareness, making the person stress-free, keeping the person involved in stress-free activities like games and exercises, and monitoring food intake habits.

Clinical diagnosis of both conditions plays an important role in deciding the correct therapy regime (NAMI, 2012). Psychosocial education                       Psychosocial education is a strong tool in reducing the impact of the eating disorder and helping the patient recognize what is causing harm to his body. The health professional usually provides education to not just the patient, but also to his family and friends, through classes, demos, and tutorials.

The patient is shown all details of the disorder that he is suffering from. Books and magazines which discuss the health condition are shared with him. Friends and family of the patient are shown examples of how to handle patients effectively through psychological incentives that draw them away or towards food for treating binge and anorexia respectively (NAMI, 2012). Two rejected recommendations Medication: It has been long argued that medication can help treat depression during anorexia or binge eating disorders (Pratt & Woolfenden, 2002, p. 2). However, authorities in New Zealand have rejected the use of medication in clinical and psychiatric therapy of patients suffering from these disorders since the impact of medication on treating depression is only time-sensitive and does not leave a lasting impact on the patient’ s health.

Instead, the patient tends to grow addicted to the products. Hypnotherapy: Use of hypnosis to prevent a person from eating too much or inducing him to eat food that he has avoided all along is also not considered as a suitable recommendation to treat both conditions (James, 2010, p. 138). The main reason behind this is that not all hypnotists are accurate and any step that goes wrong can lead to accidental damage to the patient’ s health.

Also, it depends on the receptiveness of the patient. Rationale: Two rationales why I chose these recommendations are individually separate as follows: The first reason is the positive result seen in studies conducted in the psychological treatment of patients of eating disorders (Hay et al. , 2014, p. 977). Whether it is anorexia or bulimia or binge, it has been found that the chances of a relapse are high when medication or any other form of non-psychological therapy is stopped. Also, evidence mapping shows that psychological treatment and strategies to avoid a relapse is more effective than medication or alternative treatment of these diseases (AIHW, 2007, p. 1).

In all cases, it was seen that family-based therapy and psychological intervention is the best way to keep the patient in good health. The approach also guarantees a long term impact and while there are gaps in the literature available in these findings, relentless efforts from research teams across New Zealand and from funding bodies and policymakers are all directed towards psychosocial therapy and education regarding these two prevalent eating disorders in New Zealand. Conclusion                       A section of literature found in the treatment of eating disorders concentrates on trials using medication (Bailey et al, 2014, p. 1).

While the approach is not advised in the commercial clinical treatment of eating disorders, it is understood that an alternative is being sought to avoid dependence on family, friends, and therapists, the long term ill effects of using medication driven treatments make it an undesired approach in the treatment of this disorder.  


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