Statistics: some food for thought

I was reading an article on eating disorders in middle-aged women when I found a sidebar with these statistics:

· Twice as many people suffer from anorexia as Alzheimer's disease, yet Alzheimer's research receives 50 times more funding.
· Anorexia nervosa has the highest premature fatality rate of any mental illness.
· The average American woman is 5-foot 4-inches tall and weighs 140 pounds. The average model is 5-foot-11 and 117 pounds.
· Most fashion models are thinner than 98 percent of American women.
· 81 percent of 10-year-olds are afraid of being fat.· 35 percent of "normal dieters" progress to pathological dieting.
· 25 percent of American men and 45 percent of American women are on a diet on any given day.
· Americans spend more than $40 billion on dieting and diet-related products each year.
· 40 percent of newly identified cases of anorexia are in girls 15-19 years old.
· Only 6 percent of people with bulimia receive mental- health care.
· General estimates suggest that eating disorders prove fatal for as many as 10 percent to 15 percent of people affected.
· 80 percent of American women claim to be dissatisfied with their appearance and shape, and one in two American women are on a weight-loss diet.
· An estimated 1 in 100 American women binges and purges to lose weight.
· Each day, Americans spend an average of $109 million on dieting and diet-related products.

What is wrongwith us, as a culture, that we would promote such things? People love to say that eating disorders don't happen in countries where people are starving. But guess what- people in America are starving. Only here, we use the euphamism "dieting" for it.

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Faith said...

Hey Carrie - do you have references for these? I am always looking for statistics I can cite. I'd totally appreciate it!


carrie said...

No problem- the statistics are ultimately from NEDA.

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I'm a science writer, a jewelry design artist, a bookworm, a complete geek, and mom to a wonderful kitty. I am also recovering from a decade-plus battle with anorexia nervosa. I believe that complete recovery is possible, and that the first step along that path is full nutrition.

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nour·ish: (v); to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth; to cherish, foster, keep alive; to strengthen, build up, or promote


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