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Learn self-help techniques that can help you recover from Anorexia Nervosa, correct your body-image, regain control over your appetite and live a normal, healthy life.

Anorexia Nervosa Recovery And The BAR Cycle

Anorexia Nervosa is a serious condition that can lead to starvation and death.  There are different beliefs as to the nature of the condition, being physical, mental, or even an addiction, because it has characteristics of all.  While professional diagnosis and treatment are essential in genuine anorexia cases, much can be accomplished on a self-help basis to ease the symptoms and aid in the recovery.  This article will discuss the nature of the condition, traditional treatment and self-help using the BAR Cycle.

Anorexia-The Disease-The Addiction:  This condition usually involves a low self-esteem described as "body-image."  An anorexic has a body image of being fat, even if they are thin and starving.  Anorexics will severely reduce eating or severely increase exercise to try to correct this false body-image.  Since the body-image is imaginary, they are never able to reach an acceptable weight, and often starve themselves to death. 

Anorexia can be caused by some conditions, such as nutritional deficiencies and medical drug side effects, leading some to consider this condition a physical disease.  Most people would consider it a mental disorder because of the strong beliefs and resistance to treatment involved.  Whether caused physically or mentally, Anorexia nervosa has all the characteristic traits of an addiction, making it possible to accompany traditional therapy with powerful self-help techniques to permanently change how patients see themselves. 

Traditional Anorexia Treatment:  This condition is usually diagnosed once someone is significantly underweight and still believes they need to lose weight.  Professional interview and treatment are necessary because a symptom of anorexia is the irrational belief you are overweight.  This treatment can involve anti-depressants and other medicines, psychological counseling, and often hospitalization or residential treatment for the severe cases.  

The BAR Cycle And Anorexia Self-help:  The BAR Cycle of human motivation describes a process you can use to control compulsive behavior.  Instead of repeating that description here, we're going to jump right into how the cycle can be used to help control Anorexia Nervosa on a self-help basis.  The key is the "belief " part of the cycle.  Since a false 'body image' is at the root of anorexia, we need to change our belief about our bodies and how important our weight is to our lives.  Like any addiction, a poor self-image is at the root of the behavior, so, our approach toward changing our belief has to be both general (self-image) and specific (body-image and weight).

With self-image, all the steps described in the BAR Cycle article apply, including self-talk, positive attitude, elimination of negative attitudes, positive behaviors, etc.  All of these improve how we see ourselves so, over time, we will not feel compelled to engage in compulsive behaviors to try to fix ourselves.

With body image, you apply the BAR Cycle to specifically reprogram how you see your body.  To counteract the false belief about being fat, we can get objective data, like the Body Mass Index (BMI), that specifically describes our healthy weight, based on height.  You can weigh yourself and use an online BMI Calculator to regularly monitor your weight.  This should be done at least daily so you have the true data to use every time you're tempted to think of yourself as fat.  Add to this an appointment every few months with the doctor to confirm your data from an objective source.  Also, the affirmations you use to change how you think should specifically address your body.  Use statements like: "I am the perfect healthy weight for my size and age."  "I always enjoy eating the right amounts of good foods to maintain my health and energy."  "when I look at my body, I see an attractive, healthy, energetic person."  "I know I'm far more attractive because I'm healthy, no matter what I weigh." These statements should be repeated frequently every day, so they stay fresh in your mind and you can recall them to push out and replace the negative body-image ideas when they come.

For most who suffer from Anorexia Nervosa, professional treatment is a requirement.  Denial is a major symptom of this disease.  That said, the self-help steps covered in the BAR Cycle can increase the effectiveness of treatment, reduce recovery time, and permanently change how we see ourselves.  You can move from self-loathing to self-loving in a matter of months.

I want you to know there is someone who can help, who loves you and wants only the best for you.  That someone is God.  If you want help from God, just click on Help Me God.

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