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Bulimia Facts

Get The Truth About Bulimia Facts...

Bulimia facts are based upon scientific evidence - not opinion. If you're serious about learning the facts about how bulimia affects you - you'll find the information here. Bulimia facts can be surprising as they often go against a bulimia sufferers intuition. For example one such bulimia fact is that bulimia is proven to cause weight gain... we'll explain how...

If you've already done all your research and are looking for a way to recover, our bulimia help page would be a good place to look.


Bulimia Facts - Bulimia Causes Weight Gain!


Let's start by referring to a highly respected scientific journal. In the May 2012 edition of The International Journal Of Eating Disorders it was statistically proven that bulimia sufferers actually hit their highest ever body-weight as a result of their ongoing eating disorder. That is to say that whilst the bulimia sufferers were engaged in the binge and purge cycle their body-weight significantly exceeded their pre eating disorder body-weight.

You may try to rationalise that you lost weight when you initially began to use bulimia - so this wont apply to you. The fact is that everyone loses weight when they first start to restrict (diet, exercise, purge, etc). Unfortunately the mind and body quickly realise there is a restriction of nutrition and slows down your metabolism. This in turn causes your body to try and hold on to water, store any food it can get hold of in the form of fat and also encourages the binge compulsion.

Thus the very thing you're trying to prevent (gaining fat) is precisely what bulimia encourages your body to do.

Your solution to this is to purge - right? Read on to find out the facts of why this doesn't help...

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Bulimia Facts - Why Purging Doesn't Get Rid Of Calories...


Most bulimia sufferers purge by vomiting - so we'll address this fact first. The bulimia sufferers theory behind vomiting is that it gets rid of the unwanted calories following the consumption of food (normally a binge). Unfortunately, much as it's a great theory, it doesn't work that way in reality.

Scientific tests have PROVEN that 'on average' approximately 57% of the calories from any given binge will be absorbed by the body regardless of how soon after the binge the bulimia sufferer vomits.

The average binge consists of approximately 2,200 calories so absorption from that binge would be in the region of (2,200 x 57%) 1,254 calories. That is a lot of calories to take in at one sitting, especially for someone concerned about weight gain.

The truth is that a well balanced meal consists of approximately 450 calories, so an 'average binge' followed by a purge is the equivalent of consuming almost three meals in one sitting. Does this sound like a weight loss plan to you?

So binging must be the problem - right? Read the facts about why you binge...

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Bulimia Facts - Binging Is CAUSED By Restriction & Purging!


You'd probably like to disagree that restriction and purging CAUSE binging. After all restriction and purging bring you what you want (less calories leading to weight loss) - right?


Restriction causes your brain to go into survival mode. This entails several changes you'll no doubt already be aware of:

  • Your metabolism slows down making you feel lethargic (also causing your body to convert calories to fat)
  • Your mind focuses your attention on food making you obsess over obtaining and eating it
  • When your brain hits a threshold it delivers a compulsion to binge that you can't resist

During a purge you not only fail to get rid of the consumed calories (see above) but you do lose a lot of water. You may think "that's great, water is heavy so it'll help me lose weight" - wrong again. Water is pivotal in the functioning of your body and your brain will pursue it with even greater vigour than it does food. This leads to an additional collection of problems:

Dehydration causes all manner of serious problems for the body such as headaches, more lethargy, dizziness, light headedness, memory loss and focus problems. Medically things are even more serious and extend to liver and kidney problems, joint wear, muscle wasting and a build up of toxins in your body which will make you look considerably older than you actually are. However as a bulimia sufferer these things will probably seem insignificant compared to the potential of weight gain. Unfortunately that's precisely what dehydration will lead to!

The feeling of being hungry is associated with the need for food - which is what stimulated the binge compulsion. However, being dehydrated sends the hunger signal through the roof because the brain realises that a water shortage is even more threatening to survival than a food shortage. Thus the compulsions to binge come even thicker and faster when you're dehydrated... which in turn lead to the (average) 1,254 calorie hits per binge... which coupled with the low metabolism you've brought upon yourself through restricting gets instantly converted into fat!

The reason the body converts calories to fat is because it's used to not knowing when it's next meal is coming (caused directly by you choosing to restrict). It makes sense for the body to store the calories as fat so as to extend your survival in what it perceives to be a famine.

Bulimia, a good way to control your weight - surely you're having a laugh?

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Bulimia Facts - Laxatives, Diuretics & Excessive Exercise...


Laxatives, diuretics and excessive exercise tend to be less common or secondary approaches to bulimia weight loss. We'll approach the facts with respect to each one in turn:



These are often used with the intent of hurrying the transit of food through the gut and bowel - thus reducing the time the body has to absorb calories. The truth is that the regular use of laxatives only reduces calorific absorption by around 10% - 12%.

The problem with laxatives is that they cause severe dehydration. As we've already discussed, dehydration is one of the most pivotal causes of the compulsive binge cycle. Thus, using laxatives to reduce absorption of only 10% - 12% of calories whilst at the same time encouraging compulsive binges netting on average 1,254 calories is going to result in a significant (weight) gain.

In addition to this, repeated use of laxatives causes the body's natural rhythm to be knocked out of sync which can cause chronic constipation. The resultant dehydration also causes the body to attempt to retain water at every opportunity, which in turn causes abdominal bloating. Does this sound familiar?

Do laxatives help with weight loss? - No, they merely cause a loss of precious water, leading to dehydration which in turn (through the wonders of the bulimia cycle) will net you weight gain in the form of stored fat!



Diuretics are used to help you pass more water. They have no influence on calorific absorption at all. However, they too cause dehydration so once again this results in the encouragement of the binge and purge cycle netting you extra calories and weight gain in the form of body fat.

Do diuretics help you lose weight? No, they will put weight on you in the form of fat.


Excessive exercise

Excessive exercise is perhaps the safest of all the purge methods - but only for an otherwise healthy individual. If you're malnourished or dehydrated, excessive exercise becomes dangerous.

Let's face it - people exercise to lose fat. However, if you're dehydrated and/or malnourished the body has to make a survival decision. Muscle has a high maintenance rating, which means that your body has to pour a great deal of time, energy and resources into it in order to keep it functioning and in a good state of repair. If you're malnourished or dehydrated there's no way your body is going to keep something that's high maintenance on the books. Your muscle tissue will waste as a result.

However, by comparison fat requires almost zero maintenance. Your body can maintain fat far more easily than it can maintain muscle - so given the choice... the fat stays and the muscle tone goes.

Thus, even if you run for miles and do thousands of sit-ups in an attempt to burn off the body fat (put there in the first place through bulimia), your body is designed to keep the fat and burn up your muscle tone instead. That's just the way the body works. Any body-builder will tell you the moment the nutrition stops, the muscle will literally fall off them whilst any fat will remain.

Does excessive exercise burn off fat? If you're malnourished or dehydrated (as bulimia sufferers are) then no it wont - it'll eat away at your muscle tone and leave the fat where it is.

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Bulimia Facts - Will Power Alone Isn't Enough To Recover...


How many times have you said one of the following?

  • "This is the last time"
  • "Never again"
  • "Tomorrow will be different..."

Yet in spite of good intention, being fed up with bulimia and believing will power alone will change things... it doesn't. The question is, how many times are you going to go through the motions of something you already know doesn't work?

The reason will power alone isn't enough is because bulimia doesn't respond well to it. Bulimia is an emotional disorder - not a logical rational one. If it were based upon logic and reason then will power alone would probably be enough for a full recovery. However, let's face reality here - bulimia over the long term makes no logical sense. It gains you weight, makes you look older, rots your teeth and dominates the miserable existence it traps you in. If having the condition makes no sense, why would rationality and will power overcome it?

Let's consider an analogy. Emotions are like oil whereas logic (including will power) is like water. Oil and water simply don't mix no matter how hard you try to combine them. They are also incompatible insofar as you cant replace oil with water or vice versa - their properties are simply too different.

The most you can realistically hope for through will power alone is temporary respite from bulimia.

However, permanent recovery is not only possible - it's now an option. You simply need to approach bulimia recovery in the right way, which means you need the right approach and specialised help...

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Bulimia Facts - How To Genuinely Recover From Bulimia...

bulimia recovery

In order to genuinely recover from bulimia you need to address the root cause which is always the same. Bulimia is always driven by negative emotion. As we said previously, will power alone isn't enough to over come emotions - it takes more than that.

What you need is specialised help to address;

  • Your self perception - how you see yourself and what you believe to be (unpleasantly) true about yourself
  • Your fears (weight gain, isolation, ridicule, bullying, failure, rejection, etc)

then when you're ready...

  • The bulimia cycle (which in truth will be so weakened by your shift in self perception and loss of fear(s) that it will not only have little hold on you - it will actually no longer be of any use to you). When you get to this stage in your life, all it takes is a little will power and persistence to completely recover. We can help you get here and beyond if you so choose.

We never push our clients to do anything they aren't comfortable with, nor will we force you to stop doing the bulimia thing. We are here to help get you to a place in your life where you can shrug your shoulders and say "You know what - I just don't need to do this bulimia thing anymore". That's the time you stop the bulimia cycle... when YOU realise you don't need it anymore because you've reached a point in your life where you feel comfortable with yourself.

Feeling comfortable with yourself may seem a million miles away, but with our expertise we can show you significant improvement (that you will see for yourself) in a matter of weeks. So really the ball is in your court. You can make excuses and live in denial with bulimia - or you can take action to help yourself to recover. We genuinely respect your decision either way.

If you'd like to learn more about the process and technology we use to help our clients recover, you'll find the information on our bulimia help page.

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