Originally Answered: Does a change in eating habits affect your period?
Yes. It is.It also causes missing at least 3 consecutive menstrual periods. Later on following menstrual complications.
Please read the article . I gave some important points pasted below:
Eating Disorder: Anorexia
Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by an obsessive desire for thinness, relentless dietary habits, and weight loss. It has potentially devastating psychological as well as physiologic effects.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-1V), anorexia nervosa is defined as "the refusal to maintain body weight about 85% of predicted, an intense fear of gaining weight, undue influence of body shape or weight on self image, and missing at least 3 consecutive menstrual periods." An increase in morbidity and mortality is present in anorexia nervosa when compared to other psychiatric disorders.
Pathophysiology: Anorexia nervosa is a disease that affects all organ systems. The principal systems affected are the cardiovascular and the endocrine systems. However, complications from other systems, including the gastrointestinal, renal, reproductive, neurologic, orofacial, and hematologic, are noted as well.
The following are prognostic factors and how they affect anorexia nervosa:
* Onset of anorexia nervosa before adulthood carries a more favorable outcome. However, onset at an age younger than 11 years is a poor prognostic factor.
* While the degree of weight loss at the clinically noted onset of the involvement of the patient's organic systems is not predictive of outcome, a high weight loss at presentation predicts a poor outcome.
* Both a short duration of involvement of the patient's organic systems before admission and a short inpatient treatment period are associated with a favorable outcome.
* A good relationship between the parent and child tends towards a more favorable outcome. Bryant-Waugh et al found a poor prognosis for patients from one-parent families, from families in which parents had been married before, and from families in which several generations lived together.
A review of systems may reveal many positive responses. The following are symptoms commonly observed in patients with anorexia nervosa:
* Physical health concerns
* Mental health concerns
* Concentration concerns
* Cold hands or feet
* Decision-making concerns
* Dry skin or hair loss
* Social withdrawal
* Fainting or dizziness
* Obsessiveness (food)
Mental health assessment
With mental health assessment, focus on making a diagnosis, identifying concurrent emotional-behavioral illnesses, evaluating for the risk of suicide, and exploring the psychosocial context of the symptoms.
* Predisposing factors
include the following factors that make a patient more vulnerable to developing an eating disorder:
o Female sex
o Family history of eating disorders
o Perfectionistic personality
o Difficulty communicating negative emotions
o Difficulty resolving conflict
o Low self-esteem
* Precipitating factors
relate most often to developmental tasks.
o In the individual aged 10-14 years, this is related to sexual development and menarche, which is associated with a spurt in weight gain.
o In the individual aged 15-16 years, precipitating factors stem from independence and autonomy struggles. Ambivalence about growing up is present, and an abnormal transition from dependence to interdependence rather than independence occurs.
o In the individual aged 17-18 years, identity conflicts are more common. These patients do not make healthy transitions from leaving home to going to college or getting married.
* Perpetuating factors
maintain the eating disorder.
o Biologic issues refer to the signs and symptoms of starvation and to the aspects involved in refeeding the malnourished patient.
o Psychologic issues encompass the coping strategies engendered by the eating disorders. According to Kreipe et al in 2000, the treating clinician may threaten the homeostatic balance that has been achieved within the family system secondary to dealing with the patient with anorexia; negative emotions, such as anger and denial, may be directed at the clinician.
Diet: Nutrition is an important part of the treatment for the individual with anorexia nervosa. A nutritionist or dietitian should be an integral part of the treatment plan because the well-recognized refeeding syndrome can occur during the early stages of refeeding the patient with anorexia. This syndrome encompasses cardiovascular collapse; starvation-induced hypophosphatemia; and dangerous fluctuations in potassium, sodium, and magnesium levels.
o According to Becker at al in 1999, for adequate weight gain, the patient or family requires some "education on nutrition, adjustment of caloric and nutritional intake, and limitations on exercise and other modifications of behavior. Enteral or parenteral nutrition is reserved for patients with severe undernutrition that has been refractory to treatment by these methods."
o In the moderate stage of anorexia nervosa, in addition to the above recommendations, providing structure to daily activities is necessary. This includes eating 3 meals a day. Also, parents should ensure that healthy food is available, but the patient should assume all responsibility for eating.
o In 1997, Mehler et al proposed the following strategies to avoid the refeeding syndrome to avoid pitfalls during the refeeding period:
+ Identify patients at risk.
+ Measure serum electrolytes and correct abnormalities before refeeding.
+ Obtain serum chemistry values every 3 days for the first 7 days and then weekly during the rest of refeeding.
+ Attempt to increase daily caloric intake slowly by 200-300 kcal every 3-5 days until sustained weight gain of 1-2 pounds per week is achieved.
+ Monitor patient carefully for development of tachycardia or edema.