Consecuencias de la Vigorexia
Vigorexia: El lado dañino del deporte
En un mundo como en el que vivimos, donde la imagen corporal ha cobrado tanta importancia, no podemos culpar a la casualidad del increíble aumento de trastornos como la anorexia, la bulimia o la vigorexia
En un mundo como en el que vivimos, donde la imagen corporal ha cobrado tanta importancia, no podemos culpar a la casualidad del increíble aumento de trastornos como la anorexia, la bulimia o la vigorexia. Probablemente, si asistes regularmente al gym, conoces a alguien que responde a este perfil: obsesión por verse musculoso, miradas Vigorexia: El lado dañino del constantes al espejo, continuas visitas a la báscula, abandono de deporte prácticamente todas las actividades sociales, dedicación casi exclusiva al gimnasio y a entrenar sin un objetivo claro, dietas ricas en proteínas, “demasiado” interés por los anabolizantes... De ser así, entonces es muy probable que te hayas topado con alguien que padece un serio trastorno: la vigorexia. Aunque no lo creas, no todos los que hacen ejercicio lo realizan para estar sanos; en muchas ocasiones, su única finalidad es lograr “un cuerpo perfecto”, aunque el precio para lograrlo sea sacrificar su salud. La vigorexia es una patología que se consideró, durante mucho tiempo, exclusiva del hombre; pero, ¡aguas!, porque hoy en día las mujeres también están siendo víctimas de ella. La razón es simple: las niñas desarrollan la enfermedad por querer adelgazar; los hombres, por desear ser más musculosos. El rango de edad de quienes la padecen oscila entre los 18 y 30 años; viven en las grandes ciudades; cuentan con un nivel social y económico medio-alto; dedican demasiado tiempo, entre tres y cuatro horas diarias, a practicar un deporte y el poco tiempo que les queda… Lo dedican a sus actividades u ocupaciones cotidianas. ¿QUIÉN ES EL CULPABLE? La enfermedad se desprende de un cuadro obsesivo compulsivo, que hace que el vigoréxico se sienta fracasado, abandone sus actividades y se encierre en un gimnasio día y noche. Desgraciadamente, los medios de comunicación juegan un papel muy importante en el desarrollo de la vigorexia; las revistas, la televisión e internet promueven un prototipo de “cuerpo perfecto” y quien siente que no se amolda al “tipo físico establecido”, puede ser víctima fácil. CARACTERÍSTICAS DE LOS VIGORÉXICOS ¿Cómo saber si tu mejor amigo(a) es víctima de este padecimiento? Muy sencillo, sé un poco observador(a); quien padece el trastorno presenta características físicas bien definidas como: • Mirarse constantemente al espejo y percibirse delgado o gordo y con poca musculatura (aunque no sea así). • Realizan ejercicio sin importar las condiciones climáticas; sientan alguna molestia o indisposición. Por lo general se enfadan o se sienten culpables cuando no pueden realizarlos. • Hacen dietas ricas en hidratos de carbono, proteínas y bajas en grasa. • Prestan poca atención al estudio y al trabajo, debido a los entrenamientos. • La mayoría no puede dejar de ir un día al gimnasio; son tantas las horas que pasan en él que lo sienten como un segundo hogar. • Consumen anabólicos y esteroides. • Su carácter se torna introvertido e irritable. • Mantienen un cuidado obsesivo de su imagen corporal (se miran al espejo, se pesan, se miden). • Guardan preocupación excesiva por la composición química y calórica de los alimentos. CONSECUENCIAS La vigorexia produce una gran cantidad de problemas físicos, metabólicos y estéticos; sin dejar de lado los problemas emocionales que son origen y consecuencia del trastorno. Los vigoréxicos presentan alteraciones psicológicas como depresión y ansiedad porque nunca están conformes con su cuerpo. Sus relaciones sociales se deterioran a causa de los largos y exhaustivos entrenamientos; el estudio y/o el trabajo se ven gravemente afectados, ya que son sumamente descuidados al practicar el deporte desmedidamente.
http://www.es.catholic.net/jovenes/216/546/articulo.php?id=267 13 Indicators
http://www.eating-disorder.com/Eating-Treatment/Eating-Disorders/bigorexia.htm Some gym addicts become so all-consumed with working out that they are barely able to function in other areas of their lives. Following are indicators that you (or someone you care about) may be on the path to addiction: • Isolating socially – including turning down dates or activities to work out instead. Many compulsive trainers will not attend functions where food is present – they see food as a danger which could interfere with their training progress. • Excessive Exercising – exercising for long periods, perhaps several or many times each day. • ‘Bigorexia’ – a term coined specifically for bodybuilders who are never satisfied with their size; no matter how ‘big’ they get, it is not enough. • Feelings of depression – you feel worthless if you did not complete your workout fully (for many addicts ‘fully’ means exactly what was planned – one minute less is not acceptable). • Anxiety – many addicted to training or bodybuilding feel extremely anxious (sometimes acting outwardly irritated) if they are kept from their workout • Financial decline – the addicted individual may carry several costly gym memberships (to have 24-hour access); some spend large amounts of money on dietary supplements and/or workout wear or gear • Priority #1 – addicts schedule their entire day around their gym activities
Risks/Complications of Bigorexia Some problems that may arise as a result of this disorder include: • Damaged muscles, joints and tendons • Self hatred • Poor relationships, negatively affected social life • Interference with work and school • Inability to relax without constantly worrying about the judgment of others • Depression, suicide • Hazardous effects of steroids and other bodybuilding drugs For those with bigorexia who find themselves struggling with depression, depression treatment facilities are available to help. These centers, as well as eating disorder treatment centers can be very beneficial to someone with bigorexia. http://www.casapalmera.com/articles/bigorexiamuscle-dysmorphia/
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What Is Bigorexia?
For years most persons were familiar with the term anorexia and the idea that pressure to conform to cultural standards of thinness and beauty drove persons to starve their own bodies. In 1997, the term Muscle Dysmorphic Disorder (MDD), also referred to as 'bigorexia' was coined to represent a growing "reverse anorexic" condition. Persons suffering from MDD/bigorexia find themselves caught in a cyclical pattern of working to increase their muscle development but never quite making it to their goal. Persons in this category perceive their bodies as being too small despite regular weight lifting routines and regimens intended to increase their muscle development. This perceived lack of muscle size makes them believe they are "ugly." Persons in this category are typically not as concerned about "fat" or losing weight as in other forms of disordered eating. They are primarily disturbed by their lack of muscle definition and size.
Because of this, bigorexia is not an eating disorder. It is considered to be a variant (or subtype) of Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). Disordered eating practices, however, may be employed by those who are struggling with this disorder.
It is common to find males and females in competitive weight lifting who meet the criteria for MDD/bigorexia. It is believed that the increased media spotlight on developed bodies and the desire to win competitions may feed this disorder.
Bigorexia sufferers are convinced their flaws exist (lack of muscle development) in spite of reassurances from friends and family members. Some wear baggy clothes to hide their bodies. Other bigorexics may wear tight fitting clothing to display their muscular stature, even while still feeling they have not met their body building goals. While they feature a great emphasis on the size of their body, bigorexics are not necessarily self-centered. For some, their preoccupation may cause them to actually seem shy and avoid social situations.
Bigorexia has several negative consequences: the preoccupation may cause individuals to miss important events, continue training through pain or broken bones, even lose their job/significant relationships over their workout schedule. As mentioned above, it also carries an inherent risk of creating disordered eating patterns in the individual.
What Do I Do Now?
If you are struggling with bigorexia and/or other forms of BDD, the first thing you need to know is you are not alone. Literally millions of people worldwide are struggling with this issue. As with any disorder, we strongly recommend finding a professional counselor, doctor or therapist with whom you can share your concerns, and get onto a path toward balance and peace. For more information on finding the help you need, read our article on Finding Treatment.
Additionally, we would recommend Dr. Roberto Olivardia's book, The Adonis Complex, which discusses the obsession with muscle size and body building.
http://www.findingbalance.com/articles/disorders/bigorexia.asp Brenda woods MD Kevin Wandler MD Extreme exercisers work out despite illness, injury or exhaustion and solely for weight loss; they are devastated if they miss a session. FINDINGbalance is a faith-based 501(c)(3) non-profit health and wellness organization with an emphasis on eating and body image issues. We
Addiction to exercise or bigorexia is a disorder in which people do exercise or sports continuously. These people are always forcing their bodies to the maximum, without considering the consequences. Some symptoms are:
• • • •
Looking in the mirror constantly, and still feeling bad. Investing all possible hours to exercise to build up muscles. Weighing themselves several times a day. Comparing themselves with others who practice Bodybuilding (Bodybuilding is the sport most related with this disorder).
People with bigorexia try to obtain the perfect figure and are influenced by the actual models proposed by society. Athletes who want to be the best in their disciplines and therefore, demand more from their bodies until they reach their goals can also suffer this disorder. People addicted to exercise practice exercise without caring about climate conditions. They will keep exercising even if they feel pain or are injured. If they cannot exercise or if someone criticises them, they will get angry and feel guilty.
These people will spend several hours a day exercising and cannot stop even for one day. Often times these hours are spent at a gym; making the gym almost seem like a second home. These people have personality characteristics similar to those who suffer from other types of addictions. They have low self esteem, and experience extreme difficulties in social situations. They are introverted and reject or have difficulties accepting their body image. This obsession with the body is very similar to the characteristics people with anorexia may experience.
Several health problems and injuries can occur when exercising excessively. Disproportion between body parts is common. For example, a person could have a strong and big body with a small head. The lifting of heavy weights in the gym can affect bones, tendons, muscles, and joints. The diet people who are experiencing bigorexia consume is another frequent and important problem. These people consume too much protein and carbohydrates and too little fat. Their goal is to increase muscle mass. This practice can cause disorders with other organs (especially the kidneys) and metabolism. The use of anabolic steroids is another concern associated with bigorexia. People with bigorexia will use these steroids because they believe they will be more physically fit and increase muscle mass. The use of these substances can be very dangerous! These drugs can produce an abnormal development of male
characteristics of the body, as well as irregular menstrual cycles, shrinkage of the testes, a reduced sperm count, acne, cardiac problems, and water retention. It is important to keep in mind that these drugs do not enhance muscular strength, agility or resistance; they just change appearance.
Culture, society and education are the main factors involved in the cause of this disorder. These people are constantly exposed to these factors. However, there is evidence of hormonal and central nervous system biochemical disorders involved in bigorexia. That’s why treatment should concentrate on both behavioral modification as well as the physical part. The emotional environment provided by friends and family will play a very important part in the healing process. Friends and family will need to provide support to the person who is trying to reduce their exercise habits. It will be necessary to help people with bigorexia to reduce their need for a long and intense exercise routine. We can help by convincing them to practice other type of activities that are less harmful for their body. The need to have an ideal body image does not suggest that the person has a psychological disorder. However, we should always be aware that there is a higher probability of having one for those people who have bigorexia.
TeenSmart International, Inc. (TSI), established in 2004, is a USA tax exempt (501©3) non profit organization which serves to strengthen existing youth and family development organizations in the USA and Latin America.
Lifting excessive amounts of weight, even when not in sports training. Using performance-enhancing supplements. Checking their appearance in the mirror frequently. Feeling ashamed to show their bodies in public, even when fully clothed.