Research shows that 1/5 of men who go to the gym have an eating disorder

Eating disorders when exercising is an important problem, adversely affecting the training process and the body of the gymer. Therefore, understanding and preventing this syndrome is a necessity.

Nutrition when working out is very important and when you have problems with eating, it is very difficult to regain balance. Let identify and find the cause of this syndrome. Maybe you are also having one of these symptoms without realizing it!

Manifestations of an eating disorder

According to research results from UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital (San Francisco), one in five gym people is likely to have an eating disorder for the sake of muscle gain. Specifically, 22% of young men aged 18-24 years old who went to the gym for the purpose of gaining muscle had an eating disorder, while 5% of women of the same age had similar symptoms.

The common point of the study participants is that they have one or more manifestations such as: eating more, changing the diet (in terms of ingredients and intake), using functional foods and anabolic steroids (anabolic steroids) in doses far beyond the doctor’s recommendations.

Complications of eating disorders

The researchers believe that if these manifestations are not strictly controlled, they will lead to muscle disorders. Along with other factors such as diet, excessive exercise, anxiety, stress will seriously harm the body and health of bodybuilders.

Lead study author Dr. Jason Nagata, UCSF’s youth specialist, added: “Some eating disorders are difficult to recognize. Unlike other forms of anxiety disorders or other psychological problems, this eating disorder can be mistaken for healthy eating and living habits and is easy to overlook or take lightly.

1. Body dysphoria (BDD)

Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is a psychological problem that causes a person to spend a lot of time worrying about their appearance and physical flaws. These flaws don’t bother others much, but for someone with BDD, they can be a huge problem.

girl looking in the mirror

Spending too much time worrying about your appearance may cause you to have an appearance complex

2. Muscle inferiority complex

Another psychological sign is bigorexia, a psychological disorder that makes gymers think their muscles are small, not sharp or the size is not proportionate to the training regimen, despite the fact. they were very large and the muscle groups were also very prominent.

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Scientists step in to find out the cause

To find out the cause of the above signs, another study published in the International Journal of Eating Disorders Science was conducted to analyze the behavior of 14,891 American adolescents. The aim of the researchers was to find the signs that lead to an eating disorder from a group of people around the age of 15.

The results showed that young men who exercised for the purpose of gaining muscle and gaining weight had an eating disorder 142%, for women, this figure was 248%.

Male volunteers who reported that they were underweight had a food consumption disorder increased by 56%, while this figure was 271% for female subjects with inferiority complex. Alcohol and tobacco were also two triggers of this disorder in adult volunteers.

When asked about using supplements to gain weight and build muscle, 6.9% of the men in the study admitted to using them for the purpose of improving their physique. Of these, 2.8% used anabolic steroids (a stimulant banned in some countries). In women, the rates are 0.7% and 0.4%, much lower than in men.

functional foods

Functional foods will be very harmful if abused

Dr. Nagata added: “Functional foods are a double-edged sword, because the effect they bring is very good and fast, but if abused, it will cause unpredictable consequences, especially problems. liver and kidney. Anabolic steroids also cause more serious side effects, both short and long term, such as testicular atrophy, growth retardation and cardiovascular disease.”

The researchers also added that other manifestations of appearance inferiority complex can be mentioned as completely eliminating fat from the diet, minimizing starches, weight pressure, and excessive body scrutiny. and too much practice time. And of course, eating disorders are an inevitable consequence.

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