Some anorexic patients admitted to eating an apple per day to stay skinny.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – A team of researchers from London’s King’s College managed to discover a new method of helping patients that suffer from eating disorders. It seems magnetic pulses can help certain areas of the brain to work properly. In other words, anorexia can be treated with brain stimulation.
While it may sound like the study was taken from a horror show, or a medical journal from a century ago when people thought electroshock therapy could cure homosexuality or migraines, the procedure is painless.
The researchers already tested their magnetic pulses theory on 49 human subjects, and the results are encouraging. It seems that the individuals who received the experimental therapy were more prone to taking right decisions when it came to eating than the control group who was given a placebo.
Seeing as anorexia nervosa is killing 20 percent of patients suffering from the condition yearly, the treatment was something that physicians were waiting for a long time. On average, only 20 to 25 percent of anorexia sufferers manage to get over their eating disorder that is categorized as a mental condition.
Anorexia is not a whim, as most people believe it to be. Some patients have a hard time recovering because they meet resistance and prejudice from uninformed individuals. The illness is a severe condition that affects not only the mind but also the body.
Patients that are suffering from anorexia nervosa usually believe that their caloric intake exceeded the limit of the day, and they tend to force themselves to throw up. Others eat an apple a day and are convinced that if they eat another thing they will gain too much weight.
As opposed to bulimia, where sufferers only force themselves to regurgitate their previous meals because they feel the need to clear up their stomach for another course, anorexic patients live with the idea that they are too fat and that they need to lose weight.
In most cases patients look skeletal. At the moment, the disorder is being treated with a combination of vitamin supplements and therapy. Unfortunately, only a small percentage of patients recover completely.
But British researchers found that anorexia can be treated with brain stimulation, and the results are promising.
The “repetitive transcranial stimulation method”, or rTMS was also successfully used in cases of clinical depression. The magnetic pulses are targeted towards a particular area of the brain, stimulating it to function in normal parameters.
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