Eating Disorders
Here you will find radio spots that might reference your illness.

Bulimia

from Water for Health, for Healing, for Life

 by Dr. Batmanghelidj (pages 138-140)

I am sure you are very sympathetic to people who have been given the label of “bulimic.” These people eat and then throw up whatever they have eaten. The most famous bulimic was probably the late Princess Diana. Bulimia sufferers are constantly hungry, and are also depressed and antisocial, as seems to have been the case with Princess Diana throughout her private and married life.

There is a belief among pundits who profess to understand bulimia, that the whole problem is caused by an undercurrent of psychological issues within the thought process of bulimics. Since more women suffer from the problem than men, it is assumed that the act of eating and then throwing up whatever has been eaten is a measure to remain thin. I disagree.

Uncontrollable and repeated vomiting of the stomach contents, which has been given the medical labels of “heartburn” or “bulimia,” could be one of the ways the body prevents irreparable damage when it is severely dehydrated. When it is said that bulimics feel hungry all the time, there is confusion. As far as I am concerned, they are confusing their sensation of thirst with the sensation of hunger. When they should be drinking water, they eat. Naturally, the body rejects the food because it does not possess enough water to digest and assimilate the food. This is the reason why bulimics grow so thin. The same dehydration can also be responsible for some of the emotional and psychological changes in these people.

I met Amir in the prison where I started to research the impact of water on the treatment of peptic ulcer disease. For more than ten years, on and off, he had been suffering from heartburn. During the flare-up phase of the problem, he would routinely vomit in his sleep—so forcefully that part of his stomach contents would jet out of his nose. Often eh could not clear out of his bed in time to avoid making a mess. You can imagine he had difficulty sleeping during these times. Because none of the regular medications could stop such vomiting, he had taken it for granted that his problem was incurable.

I asked him to drink a full glass of water a half hour before his food and increase his daily water intake. As simply as you read these lines, his heartburn disappeared and never came back while he was in the prison with me.

Let me share with you the human side of Amir’s story. It is interesting that in his immediate family, his daughter, his wife, and his brother had similar problems—heartburn that culminated in vomiting when the disease flared up. At this time in the life of the family, when there was a lot to fear that Amir might not get out of prison anytime soon, none of them was in a good state of health. They were stressed beyond words. They would travel for miles every week to see Amir. They would wait outside the prison walls for hours, in the heat of the summer and the cold of the winter, to have a ten- to fifteen-minute visitation.

On one of these occasions, he shared with them the fact that increased water intake had cured him of his “disease.” He was jubilant that now his family could do the same. One by one they got rid of their devastating heartburn and the social complications of the problem they had experienced for many years. Luck was with Amir. He was released unexpectedly. Before he left, he came to me and thanked me for what I had done for him. He told me, “It was worth coming to prison to get cured of my disease.”


HOME    BACK to TOP