The Eating Disorder No One Talks About

Snapchat recently unveiled a new feature in which users have access to highly recognized tabloids on the app itself. Magazines and media productions such as Cosmopolitan, People Magazine and Buzzfeed all offer a daily story on Snapchat, and one account titled Refinery 29 shared an article that caught my attention.

The article discussed an eating disorder named Chewing and Spitting. This specific form of disordered eating fails to receive much acknowledgement in the contexts of eating disorders, though it far more common than one may think. The disorder itself involves an individual chewing up food in their mouth and immediately spitting it out once it is chewed. The methodology behind this disorder is the concept that a person is still able to taste food, though refrain from ingesting any caloric value because they immediately remove it from their mouth.

I personally had never heard of this disorder being categorized as a formal eating disorder, though I have encountered it before. When I was struggling with Anorexia Nervosa in addition to Bulimia, I exercised use of the Chewing and Spitting methodology, though I was entirely unaware it was categorized as an independent eating disorder.

I believe the reasoning behind a lack of knowledge in regards to this type of disordered eating is a result of a lack of research invested in this disorder. When I conducted a Google search on the topic, a tremendous amount of personal accounts from individuals who struggle with this disorder presented themselves. It is apparent that this disorder is far more prevalent across the world than it seems.

Chewing and Spitting is incredibly destructive to the human body, similar to other eating disorders. A person who struggles with this disorder is likely to encounter an increase in their insulin levels, mouth and stomach ulcers, swollen gums, decaying teeth, and other oral/digestive health issues.

I feel as though it is essential to spread awareness of this eating disorder in order to educate individuals of its popularity among young persons despite its low recognition. Please educate yourself about this issue and ensure to educate others as well.

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