Sunday, August 17, 2014

Battling Eating Disorders On Ramadan

Photo Credit
Ramadan, the holy month of fasting and prayer in the Islamic religion started June 28, and ended on July 28th. Although the month of fasting has ended, many Muslim women with eating disorders are still struggling with issues of food and body image.

A Muslim teen girl from Minnesota recently wrote online how she struggled with her eating disorder. She would starve herself, exercise vigorously, and during the month of Ramadan, she struggled even more.

The teenager, who referred to herself as "H" to protect her anonymity said,  “only in Ramadan I question why I want to fast. It becomes a battle in my head, like I have to choose between God or the disorder. Ramadan has always been a triggering time. . . Though Ramadan was triggering, it excited me too, because of the thought of not eating like everyone else."

Because fasting is at the core of Ramadan, it’s easy for Muslim girls to get away with their eating disorders during that month. They are praised for not eating, not judged.

"H" continued, “in between being normal and being the version of myself that had what medical professionals call Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS), I’d spend a ridiculous amount of time on pro-anorexia and -bulimia sites. This intensified during the summers and during Ramadan. . . Many don’t know if they’re fasting for Allah or for anorexia."

Millions of people struggle with eating disorders around the globe. It affects men, women, boys, and girls of all religions and cultures. If you find yourself battling an eating disorder, enrolling in a treatment center with a specialized eating disorder program is a great idea.

1 comment: