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Eating disorders is no longer white woman's illness

Eating disorders not effect other races and cultures, but also genders.
Eating disorders not effect other races and cultures, but also genders.
Associate Press

Eating disorders was once labeled as the “white woman’s illness”. Due to the lack of diversity within research, the stereotype was developed towards white women to be prone to this disorder, such as anorexia nervosa. But now, research shows that eating disorder is no longer an illness that only white women encounter.

Eating disorders among African American women

In the African American culture, it was always taught to women, at an early age, to embrace the fullness of their bodies. Unlike Caucasian women with being thin, having a curvaceous figure is the standard of beauty within the culture. But what about maintaining the fullness and not falling into mainstream category of fatness? A growing number of African American women are adapting to unhealthy eating habits which may turn into eating disorders. Research has been conducted on African Americans that showed that they are more prone to the eating disorder, bulimia nervosa. Bulimia is not easily detected at a glance because those who are bulimic are able to maintain their weight, but they do not maintain their food. Bulimics participate in regurgitating their food and the misusage of laxatives.

Eating disorders among men

Eating disorders are not only crossing racial and cultural lines, but also crossing the gender lines. The American Journal of Psychiatry has estimated that one million of American men suffer from a male version of anorexia, in which is called manorexia. It appears that women are not the only one who has a fixation of having “the perfect body” Manorxia consists of excessive exercise, over usage of dietary supplements, and less of food intake.


Eating disorders fall up under the categories of medical and mental health illness. At times, eating disorders can be the effect of some traumatic experience, such as sexual abuse. This is due to feeling that food intake is the only thing that they may have control of. Other causes are due to pressure of society’s standards of beauty. It is very essential for someone who has an eating disorder to participate in an intensive outpatient program, where the person will receive counseling services, along with classes dealing with nutrition, exercise, and body image.


  • Achaz Foster 5 years ago

    I guess that is something I struggle with!! I never knew they had a name for it but it seems to never work! I have a loved one who says they are concerned about me but if I lose 45lbs I will be at the weight for my height! I guess it's just deflating when you are trying but there is no motivation from the other person...instead of watching isn't it a better way to help someone instead of making assumptions and certain looks when you think I am not looking! I may not have the 6 pack but I am also not the biggest person in the world!! I could make comments about the other but I choose not to b/c I don't like to argue or down somebody!! I just need some advice on what to do!!!

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