Writing an anorexia essay may be challenging due to the complicated nature of the topic. Moreover, the topic itself is rather broad, so it might be hard to include all the necessary information within a few pages. That is why we have prepared a few tips on writing an anorexia nervosa essay for you, along with the useful text and outline examples. 

How to write an anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa essay

  • Try to narrow down the topic, if possible

In case the professor does not limit you, choose only one aspect. You can write on symptoms, causes, and treatments for anorexia nervosa or stick to the effects of pharmacological treatment on anorexia nervosa. You can also write cause and effect essay on anorexia or choose a particular case study to analyze. In such a case, it would be easy for you to investigate the problem on a profound level and include all the relevant information there. 

  • Start with an outline

The outline is essential for even an essay, so you can start any paper by drafting an outline. It will save your time (as you will not think too long about the significant points to discover) and will ensure the proper structure of your text. 

  • Rely on the peer-reviewed studies

There are lots of psychological studies you can refer to, and many of them are dedicated to the problem of anorexia. Therefore, it would be great to use relevant studies instead of focusing on online sources or available books as the credibility of your paper will rise. 

  • Start with a personal story

If you are looking for the best introduction for your essay on anorexia, try to search for real people's stories. You can refer to any of the people you know or lookup for the news in media. In any case, adding a personal story at the beginning will help you to prove the importance of the problem. 

Outline for the Essay on Anorexia

Below you can find an example of the outline for the essay, which focuses on the anorexia problem in general. You can modify it according to your narrowed topic or own preferences.

1. Introduction

  • Personal story of the anorexia case;
  • Importance and prevalence of anorexia;
  • Thesis statement.

2. Reasons for anorexia

  •  Variety of triggers;
  •  Fitting the standards;
  •  Low self-esteem;
  •  Willingness to meet the expectations.

3. Defining anorexia

  • Psychological symptoms;
  • Biological symptoms. 

4. Treatment of anorexia

  • Physiological treatment;
  •    Psychological treatment. 

5. Conclusion

You will also find the example of the essay on anorexia below. Please note that the example provided does not contain the necessary references as it aims to show the way this topic can be analyzed in the academic paper. 

Anorexia nervosa: a serious, deadly disease essay example

Every 62 minutes, one person in the world dies from an eating disorder. It includes a large number of diseases: anorexia nervosa, bulimia, orthorexia, compulsive overeating, and more. From this range, the highest mortality rate belongs to anorexia - 5-6% of patients die from complications caused by it, a little less from bulimia. Despite this fact, many people still tend to think that anorexia and other eating-related disorders are nothing but the dedication to modern trends or a form of a protest. Still, anorexia is a severe disease that has specific symptoms and patterns of treatment, the neglecting of which may lead to a severe health issue and even death. 

Reasons for Anorexia

Contrary to misconceptions, anorexia nervosa is not a lack of appetite, but conscious self-restraint in food or even a complete rejection of food. Moreover, anything can become a trigger for the disorder - a remark about the excess weight, a joke about the amount of food consumed, or direct advice to lose some kilograms. As a rule, risk factors include a genetic predisposition, a problematic situation in the family, excessive stress, as well as psychological characteristics of a person - for example, the ability to withstand stress or social pressure.

According to experts, an eating disorder is most often found in girls aged 14-18 years. It can be explained by the fact that young people, unable to cope with the social burden, do not seek to change their body, but use other ways to "get away" from problems that are approved in their circle, - for example, video games. The recent studies confirm this thesis: in the United States, various eating disorders among women are ten or even 20 times more common than among men. However, in 2010, Western researchers noted that the number of men with anorexia is increasing: more and more young people are trying to "fit" themselves to the standards of the fashion industry.

Doctors specializing in eating disorders cannot explain precisely why some people can lose a few pounds and stop, while in others, it turns into a disease. Now scientists are trying to diagnose anorexia nervosa in the early stages and find a mechanism that makes a person cross the line - want to lose weight until the body is completely exhausted and even dies. Nevertheless, unfortunately, there is no consensus on this matter. It was possible to establish only a few factors that, under certain circumstances (they are always individual), cause the child to lose a critical attitude to his condition and behavior. So, at risk are girls with low self-esteem, hyper responsibility, and perfectionism. Among them, many excellent students, athletes, and leaders are accustomed to do everything for which they undertake for the highest score. 

Anorexia is a disease of the wealthy segments of the population, where a teenager is under pressure: he must graduate from high school and enter a prestigious university in order to meet the expectations of his parents and society. However, once in the "adult" world, a child often cannot justify the hopes placed on him. Therefore, he feels a loss of control over life. All that remains for him is his own body. Here, the replicated view that thin means successful and a full one is a loser comes into play.

Defining Anorexia

At an early stage, an eating disorder cannot be recognized - it manifests itself only in thoughts, less often in conversations about losing weight. Many people encounter such desires from time to time, so it is quite natural. Therefore, the disease becomes noticeable only when the diet goes beyond the norm. During this period, a restriction in food often goes along with excessive exercise.

Anorexia nervosa, the symptoms of which can be determined without difficulty, most often occurs in adolescents, zealously following the imposition on the Internet, in fashion magazines, and on television, of thinness fashion. Nevertheless, there are several symptoms of anorexia which can help to define this disease. The most obvious sign of anorexia is the rejection of food or the limitation of its quantity over a long period. People suffering from anorexia often refuse to eat in the company of other people, fearing that their "weakness" will be noticed. They may lie about how much they ate and not attend social events related to food consumption. Besides, they often become moody, depressed, obsessive about their weight (and the weight of those around them), indifferent to things that they once liked. About half of anorexia patients suffer from increased hunger, which is why they eat a lot and then cause vomiting. Often anorexics have reduced sexual activity. Due to the lack of the necessary vitamins in the body, hormonal failure can occur in the body, which leads to amenorrhea. The patient's body temperature decreases. There may also be problems in the work of the heart, which directly depends on the presence of the necessary electrolytes in the body (during vomiting, a person loses an abundant supply of potassium). Since food is fuel for our body, dietary restrictions can lead to radical changes related to health. Weight loss remains the most noticeable, but not the most important of them. According to the Mayo Clinic, regular malnutrition leads to heart problems, constipation, low blood pressure, osteoporosis, swelling in the arms and legs, irregular blood counts, menstruation, dehydration, and insomnia.

However, people with anorexia do not necessarily refuse food. They can eat very little, intensively burning calories in the gym, or get rid of eaten food. Even though instant disposal of food is considered the main sign of bulimia, bulimia itself often becomes the first symptom of anorexia.

Treatment of Anorexia

The eating disorder leads to irreversible changes in the human body - even death. The highest mortality rate is in patients with anorexia. In terms of danger, bulimia is in second place. It threatens not only the emergence of a confrontation between different parts of the personality: the socially successful "I am beautiful" and "I am terrible," unable to put an end to overeating and cleansing, but, for example, a rupture of the esophagus. That is why the treatment of anorexia is essential; for the same reason, the recovery should be controlled by specialized experts. 

Since anorexia affects the body as a whole, the first step in its treatment should be the removal of symptoms. Experts say that at the first stage of recovery, it is useful to take vitamins, drink as much water as possible and carefully monitor nutrition in terms of the ratio of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates on a plate. In general, it is impossible to give general advice on drug treatment - an individual approach is essential. If the case is severe and the patient falls into intensive care, protein preparations, amino and fatty acids, and special nutritional cocktails are administered intravenously and through a probe. Patients who can still move on their own are prescribed an "infant regimen" - fractional feeding 6-10 times a day. Every 3 hours, one needs to take a special protein mixture. Then mashed potatoes and ground soups from fruits and vegetables are added, later - steamed dishes from whole products (without preservatives, dyes, flavoring additives). The organism cannot process anything more than an "adult" one. At the same time, enzymatic, metabolic and cardio preparation, sorbents, fish oil, B vitamins, brewer's yeast are prescribed. When, what, and to whom — the doctor decides after a weekly examination and based on laboratory tests.

After the symptoms are resolved, actions are usually taken to resolve the psychological problems that underlie the disease. Therapy, antidepressants, or hospitalization are the most common treatments. At the same time, doctors note that treatment options are determined by the duration and severity of the disease. Nevertheless, in any case, it is better, in order to prevent irreversible consequences, if help is received at the initial or secondary stage of anorexia.

In the treatment of anorexia, various psychotherapeutic methods are used. One of the first tasks that experts set for themselves is the correction of malnutrition, which can threaten the patient's life. Then, psychological work is carried out on the problems that led to the disease. Therapy is often complicated by the fact that anorexia patients do not recognize themselves as patients. For this reason, the treatment of anorexia at home is almost always doomed to failure and is fraught with death. 

Methods of behavioral therapy in the treatment of anorexia suggest compensatory nutrition. In the case when eating behavior is not amenable to treatment, probe nutrition should be used. Therapy involves constant patient rewards for weight gain. In addition to behavioral approaches to the treatment of anorexia, body-oriented methods of treatment are also used to change the patient's misconceptions about his appearance, healthy weight, diet, and necessary activity. Gestalt therapy, dance therapy, transactional analysis, psychodrama, and art therapy are effective in treating anorexia.


Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by low body weight. The thinness is caused by the patient himself - in order to lose weight or to prevent weight gain. The disease usually begins with the idea of losing weight a little, but even having reached its ideal weight, a person does not stop but continues to starve and lose kilograms. The main problem is that an anorexia patient is not able to adequately evaluate his reflection in the mirror. People around for a long time see excessive thinness, and a person stubbornly denies weight loss, considers himself fat, and wants to lose even more kilograms. So the dependence on the idea is manifested.