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Next to Nothing: A Firsthand Account of One Teenager's Experience with an Eating Disorder

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An eating disorder is more than a simple case of dieting gone awry, and if you or someone you know has anorexia or bulimia, then you are probably familiar with the isolation, desperation, and shame that these illnesses can bring. Eating disorders afflict millions of people all over the world, especially young women, and are among the most harmful of psychiatric illnesses.

Carrie Arnold developed anorexia as an adolescent and nearly lost her life to the disease. In Next to ...

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An eating disorder is more than a simple case of dieting gone awry, and if you or someone you know has anorexia or bulimia, then you are probably familiar with the isolation, desperation, and shame that these illnesses can bring. Eating disorders afflict millions of people all over the world, especially young women, and are among the most harmful of psychiatric illnesses.

Carrie Arnold developed anorexia as an adolescent and nearly lost her life to the disease. In Next to Nothing, she tells the story of her descent into anorexia, how and why she fell victim to this mysterious illness, and how she was able to seek help and recover after years of therapy and hard work. Now an adult, Arnold uses her own experiences to offer you the practical advice and guidance you can use in your own struggle against disordered eating. With the help of B. Timothy Walsh, M.D., one of America's leading authorities on eating disorders, Next to Nothing reveals in easy-to-understand terms what is known and not known medically about anorexia and bulimia. The book also covers such difficult topics as: The various types of psychotherapy available to those struggling with eating disorders, How to make the most of psychiatric hospitalization, Talking to family and friends about anorexia and bulimia. Part compelling memoir and part practical guide, Next to Nothing will help to ease the suffering and confusion that an eating disorder can bring, offering you the information and support you need to manage and maintain your recovery on a daily basis.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Wise, hopeful, funny, and inspiring. Next to Nothing unravels the mysteries of eating disorder treatment and recovery. Carrie Arnold makes sense out of the confusion as she guides us along her personal journey of healing. I wish my family and I could have read this book during my struggle with anorexia and bulimia. This is a must-read!"—Jenni Schaefer, author of Life Without Ed: How One Woman Declared Independence from Her Eating Disorder and How You Can Too

"In this well-written and readable book, Carrie Arnold guides the adolescent with an eating disorder through what to expect in the recovery process using her own often-bumpy recovery as illustration. Providing tips for everyday survival in the real world and a broader view to help stay the course to health, her message is a powerful and encouraging one, made all the more believable to the adolescent sufferer because she has been there. Carrie also provides information on internal thoughts of the eating disorder that can help parents gain insight into what their adolescent is experiencing and how they might respond."—Kathleen A. Mammel, MD, Chief, Adolescent Pediatrics, William Beaumont Hospital, and Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Wayne State University

"Humor and stark honesty are Arnold's trademarks. Most writers uncritically throw in everything that has ever been said of eating disorders; Arnold pares it down to up-to-date and accessible science. This book is a wonderful combination of wit and wisdom."—Laura Collins, author of Eating with Your Anorexic

"This book is an insightful account of one person's struggle with an eating disorder. It offers a helpful mix of information, ranging from the personal to the professional. I expect this book will be helpful to young adults with an eating disorder and their families."—Daniel le Grange, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Director, Eating Disorders Program at The University of Chicago

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195309669
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 7/3/2007
  • Series: Adolescent Mental Health Initiative Series
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 688,009
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 5.40 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Carrie Arnold waged a seven-year battle with anorexia and bulimia. The holder of a Master's of Public Health in Epidemiology, she is actively involved in eating disorders advocacy and education. She is also the author of Running on Empty: A Diary of Anorexia and Recovery. B. Timothy Walsh, M.D., is the Ruane Professor of Pediatric Psychopharmacology in the Department of Psychiatry at the College of Physicians & Surgeons, Columbia University. A past president of the Academy for Eating Disorders and currently an Associate Editor of the International Journal of Eating Disorders, he established the Eating Disorders Research Unit at New York State Psychiatric Institute. His books include If Your Adolescent Has an Eating Disorder: An Essential Resource For Parents (OUP 2005) and Treating and Preventing Adolescent Mental Health Disorders: What We Know and What We Don't Know (OUP 2005).

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Table of Contents

Foreword     ix
Preface     xiii
A Very Heavy Weight: Life With Anorexia and Bulimia     1
Consumed by ED     1
Obsessing About Food     4
Grabbing Hold of Recovery     7
The Face in the Mirror     9
Evolution of an Eating Disorder     12
In the Beginning     13
Just Five Pounds...     16
Atlanta, GA     17
Impatient Inpatient     20
Treatment in Philadelphia     23
Hospitalization, Take Two     25
The Basics: What You Need to Know About Eating Disorders     27
Eating Disorders Defined     28
What Causes Eating Disorders?     33
Medical Dangers     46
Diseases That Frequently Co-occur With Eating Disorders     49
Diagnostic Migration     53
So, What Next?     54
After the Diagnosis: Getting the Right Treatment for You     55
Seeking Help     56
Goals of Treatment     58
Starting Treatment     59
Close-up on the Treatment Team: Who They Are and What They Can Do for You     61
Intensive Treatment Options     77
Recovery in Any Setting     82
The Personal Challenges of Recovery: Practical Tips     84
Accepting That You Have an Eating Disorder     85
Strategies and Techniques for Maintaining Recovery     85
Medical Issues in Recovery and Beyond     97
Food for life     98
Recovery at All Costs     100
Dealing With the World While in Recovery     101
Talking to Family and Friends About Your Eating Disorder     102
Enlisting Support During Recovery     103
Dealing With Dumb Comments, Part I     105
Everyday Life: The 23 hours Each Day When You're Not in Therapy     106
Walking the Walk and Talking the Talk     110
Relapse: There and Back Again     112
One Step Forward, Two Steps Back     114
Return to Anorexia     117
Back in Residential Treatment     120
Relapse Prevention     120
Dealing With Dumb Comments, Part II     122
Closure     124
For Caregivers of Young People With Eating Disorders     129
Some Frequently Asked Questions for the Recently Diagnosed     137
Glossary     147
Resources     151
Bibliography     159
Index      161
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2009

    I Also Recommend:


    This is not just a book for teenagers, it is a book for anyone trying to understand what they are feeling. It is written in a non-scary, non-medical way--easy to understand and very relatable. I think I underlined half the book, and my boyfriend read it too, to try to understand what I feel from another perspective.

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