The Effects Of Eating Disorders On The Health Of College Students

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For college students in the United States, the act of taking care of one’s health sometimes falls to the bottom of one’s list of priorities as classes, assignments, and extracurricular activities pile up. As a likely result of the stressors in the life of a college student, healthcare for this demographic group has become an area of interest and concern. Among the many medical issues that college students face, eating disorders have dramatically increased their prevalence in some student populations (White et al., 2011). Even more damaging effects can result from combining an eating disorder with unhealthy methods that students use to boost energy and stay awake, like the consumption of energy drinks (Seifert et al., 2011). Ultimately, the …show more content…
One study reported that approximately 51% of surveyed college students consumed more than one energy drink per day and listed lack of sleep or wanting to increase energy as their primary reasons for consumption (Malinauskas et al., 2007). Aside from these typical reasons that college students would consume energy drinks, these are often consumed to improve weight loss efforts (Seifert et al., 2011). This additional potential makes energy drinks appealing options for individuals with eating disorders, as the individuals believe that the energy drinks will help curb their appetites and replace the energy they are lacking (Seifert et al., 2011). However, individuals with eating disorders who consume energy drinks may face higher risks of damaging effects, especially when the eating disorder is combined with the stresses of being a student. Common health risks for individuals without eating disorders who excessively consume energy drinks include tooth and gum decay, decreased energy over the course of the day, headaches, and even heart palpitations (Sullivan, n.d.). For individuals with eating disorders, the same health risks from energy drinks pose a threat along with severed cardiac dysrhythmias and abnormalities (Seifert et al., 2011). Ultimately, college

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