Compensatory Behaviors used in… | Counseling | Therapy

Compensatory Behaviors used in Bulimia Nervosa

Alex , CAS, MSW, ACSW, LCSW — Founder & executive director

The most common Compensatory behaviors (not including excessive exercise) used in Bulimia Nervosa are (in order of most prevalent to least prevalent)

* Self-induced vomiting
* Laxative abuse
* A combination of Laxative abuse and self-induced vomiting
* Diuretic misuse

Laxative abuse has very little or no affect on calorie absorption. Diuretic misuse (used by about 10% of women with Bulimia) has absolutely no effect on calorie absorption. It is interesting to note that at least 50% of the calories consumed during a binge are still absorbed after vomiting.

The vicious cycle of Bulimia Nervosa - Fear of weight gain and vomiting are the two key factors that contribute to the development and maintainenance of this eating disorder

* Intense Fear or weight gain leads to strict dieting which leads to Binge eating
* The self-induced vomiting actually encourages the process of overeating. This is because the individual becomes more likely to overeat because they believe they can undo the binge through vomiting. Secondly because they realize that it is easier to vomit if they consume a lot of food.

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