Anorexia Nervosa As A Culture Bound Syndrome

1440 WordsOct 9, 20156 Pages
ering from Anorexia-Nervosa within western countries, compared to that of 3.2% of females suffering from Anorexia-Nervosa in non western countries (DiNicola 1990:253), it is not surprising that Anorexia Nervosa has been labeled a Culture-Bound Syndrome. There have been three prominent hypotheses as to why this particular disease is considered so. The most prominent of these hypotheses is that westernized media’s ideologies of thinness and beauty have influenced young females into developing a “fat-phobia," also responsible is the incompetent ability of western biomedicine in diagnosing the disease, and finally westernized socio-culture’s influence on anorexia outside of western regions. Culture-Bound Syndromes were first pegged by…show more content…
Although no biological issues have been found that cause Anorexia Nervosa, there are many hypotheses as to why this is such a rapidly spreading disorder within Western culture. This specific culture varies greatly in terms of what is considered socially acceptable, from other cultures. Within the Western world, being thin is glamorized as the ideal female body type. The image of the skinny female body being ideal has infiltrated the collective consciousness of most women within our culture, due in large part to mass media which helps disseminate and exploit this very untenable and unhealthy ideal, in which young vulnerable girls have little escape. This Westernized social factor engraves and stresses upon society 's accepted standards of beauty and social inclusivity, which all too often translates into an overwhelming belief that if a young woman does not physically ascribe to this notion, that she is less worthy of love and affection (Simpson 2000: 65). This dangerous pandering of unhealthy superficiality has caused increased levels of body dysmorphia, which in turn leads to a structural suffering by the aversion of food as a means to loose weight. Two Psychiatrists, Joel Kevin Thompson and Leslie J. Heinberg (1999), studied the “media’s influence on body image disturbance and eating disorders” (Thompson,.et Heinberg:Dec 17, 2002) , basing their research within the
Open Document