Most of the time when people scroll through Instagram or the online news, they see stories about females with eating disorders, or significant weight loss due to bulimia or anorexia. Never does the audience really witness anything about a male with these eating disorders.
Men with eating disorders remain underdiagnosed, undertreated, and underreported in the news and on social media.
A study reported 25% of anorexia and bulimia cases involve males. Men tend to brush it off and learn to cope with the issue instead of seeking treatment. Nevertheless, modern day males ages 11-19 still grow obsessed with what they think is the “perfect” body.
When these young men mix over-exercising and a condition like anorexia or bulimia, it appears to many that they do not have disorder at all. They aspire to appear lean, fit, perfectly cut, and buff. This pattern interferes with their health even more and can double the severity.
Men that work out on a daily basis tend to go on a diet which can lead to eating disorders. If they have the disorder for long enough and they continue to push their bodies, they can develop muscle dysmorphia – a psychological issue perpetuating negative body image.
When someone gets to the point of muscle dysmorphia, it can brainwash its host to aspire to an impossible level of thinness. Most men believe that proceeding to work out and fatigue themselves will improve their shape and mental health. When adding steroids to muscle dysmorphia, the once treatable disorder turns from psychological to physiological and deadly.
According to society, men should appear invincible and unaffected by the world around them. The truth is, men are facing the same struggles as women, sometimes at a higher level of intensity. Overlooking these men facing eating disorders leads to deadly consequences.
The medical community and media outlets need to emphasize the prevalence of this issue amongst men and its danger to their health and happiness.
Written by Aisley Pope