Hopkins Academy

“Drunkorexia”

In Features on November 8, 2011 at 1:18 pm

Taylor Jo ’12

A new dietary trend has been put in the spotlight that is both a way to slim down and save money… oh, and get drunk faster. This epidemic has turned into a lifestyle for many, shown mainly through college girls and celebrities, and is showing big trouble in recent research. It is known as Drunkorexia. Says Dr. Kevin Prince, an Alcohol and Other Drug Education Program Coordinator, in an article by Ashley Jennings posted on ABC News, “Abuse counselors are putting the word ‘drunkorexia’ in line with other eating disorders because the patient uses the same type of methods as anorexia and bulimia- they just mix it with alcohol too.”

Studies define this trend as someone who restricts food intake to reserve calories for alcohol and binge drinking. Like mentioned before, drunkorexia is expressed more through the college scene. Colleges lately have been trying to track down this behavior, but with the attitude of mainly all students, it’s a bit of a battle. According to Savannah, a 22-year old University of Texas graduate,  “I’ve always watched my weight and skipped meals to account for a high calorie count of alcohol. It was just something I always did while in college as a normal part of my diet so that I could stay skinny but still go out and drink.” Now Savannah is clearly not the only one doing this… and the trend isn’t expected to stop anytime soon. However, all is said and good with this lifestyle until the effects of it begin to set in.

Both eating disorders and alcohol abuse pose serious health problems for those experiencing them. As if aftermath problems with those weren’t hard enough to deal with on a single basis, combining those two sound like a sure downfall. What makes drunkorexia so dangerous is that a person deprives their brain of nutrients and energy when exposed to alcohol. Adding that calories before that exposure are being restricted, research has shown that those people have a higher chance of having alcohol abuse issues and are involved in more risky behavior as a whole.

Whichever way you look at it, drunkorexia is both an illness or addiction. You catch it in college or through the media, you experience it, and you suffer the consequences. As a big part of this is the stress of remaining thin, the hype is directed towards women. This hysteria has been going on for years, and as it is recently been getting more exposure and taken into concern of the public, there will certainly be more attention paid to these cases.

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