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The long term effects of bulimia are plentiful and terrifying. Some of them will only effect your appearance... but others cause health complications for many years.
Below you'll learn some of the bulimia side effects which are long lasting and long term. I'll also share my tips on how to reverse the damages of this illness.
IMPORTANT: I have listed the long term Side effects of bulimia only to inform and educate. I hope that they motivate you to recover rather than dishearten you.
Your brain can suffer terribly from the long term effects from bulimia. It can develop unhealthy habits such as suicidal thoughts, self-harm, Impulsive behavior, obsessive compulsive tendencies and binge/purge compulsions.
These habits get hard wired into the brain and can be difficult to correct... This is why recovering from bulimia can be so complicated.
Often therapy is needed to break these habits and return the brain to it's original condition. I talk extensively about rewiring neural pathways to become a normal eater in The Bulimia Recovery Program.
Because of constant bingeing and purging, bulimics often find it hard to digest the food they eat. You develop lazy bowel syndrome. This is when your stomach can't cope with having to digest food. Lazy bowel syndrome is extremely frustrating. It causes bloating, stomach pain and uncomfortable constipation.
Lazy bowel syndrome also makes bulimia recovery much more complicated. Sometimes you'll want to recover - but the discomfort caused by eating forces you to purge.
When I was bulimic, I had terrible lazy bowel syndrome. It was painful and frustrating. I wanted to recover... But any time I tried to digest anything I'd get terrible pain and bloating. I also put on weight easily because my digestive system was so damaged.
It takes a lot of time and persistence to recover from lazy bowel syndrome... but it can be done. Keep your diet full of healthy fresh foods and learn to listen to your body... Learn how to know when you are hungry and when you are full. Do this and in time, you will begin to recover.
Bulimia teeth can be one of the most embarrassing long term effects of bulimia... Having a reminder of your illness staring you in the face every time you open your mouth. Unfortunately, without dental assistance, bulimia teeth are irreversible...
BUT, don't worry too much about this - there are options... read more about bulimia teeth here.
Bulimia can cause low bone density. This is irreversible and can cause many problems such osteoporosis and weak bones which break easily.
To help combat low bone density and osteoporosis - try your best to eat (and keep down) high calcium foods. Low-fat dairy products and green leafy vegetables (especially kale, parsley, and dark lettuces) are ideal. Avoid eating too much salt, sugar, animal protein, alcohol and coffee. All these foods cause calcium loss
Smokers start to look old before their time from mistreating their bodies... And bulimics are no different. If you've suffered from bulimia for a long time, you will most likely see it's damages clearly on your face and body.
Bulimics suffer from premature ageing due to dehydration, lack of nutrients and damaged endocrine glands. To make sure that you age well it's important to break the bulimia cycle now. Recovery is a difficult but rewarding journey - find out how I recovered from bulimia here.
Being able to have children is one of the greatest gifts possible for a women. Bulimia could strip you of this gift and leave you infertile for life. If your periods become irregular, or stop altogether - you are at serious risk.
One of the most terrifying long term effects of bulimia is brain damage and COMA. I know this might sound extreme - but you would be surprised how often it happens.
Your body becomes so depleted of electrolytes that you can suffer from a sudden heart attack. The heart attack may kill you - or it may leave you with brain damage, or in a coma... This is what happened to Terri Schiavo.
Bulimia can cause severe acid reflux...
1 in every 10 people who have Constant acid reflux will develop a condition called Barrett's Esophagus...
Around 1% of people with Barrett's Esophagus will develop a kind of cancer called esophageal adenocarcinoma. The Long Term Effects of Bulimia... And My Top 3 Tips To Reverse Them....
I have been bulimia-free for nearly 4 years. As far as I'm aware I have been lucky enough to escape the long term effects of bulimia. However...
I don't put this all down to luck...
My TOP 3 steps to reverse the long term effects of bulimia
Dive head-first into your bulimia recovery. The longer you have bulimia for - the worse the long term effects will be... And the harder they will be to reverse.
Pack your diet full of foods that aid health and recovery. Blueberries, leafy greens, fresh fish, fruit and so on. Of course also allow yourself to have fun foods (treats!) each day.
Try to eliminate stress from your life. Go on holiday... Have fun. Let your hair down. Hang out with friends and people who uplift and inspire you. Stress is one of the number 1 causes of illness... Living a stress-free life will do wonders for your recovery and for your longevity.
You deserve to be healthy and happy... Bulimia doesn't have to win this battle.
If I recovered - you can too! GO FOR IT!
Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of your-bulimia-recovery.com
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community