Eating Disorder – Rumination

Rumination is an eating disorder characterized by having the contents of the stomach drawn back up into the mouth, chewed for a second time, and swallowed again.In some animals, known as ruminants, this is a natural and healthy part of digestion and is not considered an eating disorder. However, in other species (including humans), such behavior is atypical and potentially dangerous as the esophagus can be damaged by frequent exposure to stomach acids.

Rumination is also associated with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, and can be the result of one’s apprehension and nervousness after eating a normal meal. For those with purging behaviors, rumination can take place when the option of getting rid of a meal via throwing up is not available (thus, one might feel worried and visibly upset).

Weight-loss diets restrict the intake of specific foods, or food in general, to reduce body weight. What works to reduce body weight for one person will not necessarily work for another, due to metabolic differences and lifestyle factors. Also, for a variety of reasons, most people find it very difficult to maintain significant weight loss over time. There is some thought that losing weight quickly may actually make it more difficult to maintain the loss over time. It is also possible that cutting calorie intake too low slows or prevents
weight loss. The National Institutes of Health notes that the commonly recommended program of reduced caloric intake along with increased physical activity has a long-term failure rate of 98%.

Many professional athletes impose weight-gain diets on themselves. American football players may try to “bulk up” through weight-gain diets in order to gain an advantage on the field with a higher mass.

Individuals who are underweight, such as those recovering from anorexia nervosa or from starvation, may undergo weight-gain diets which, unlike those of athletes, has the goal of restoring normal levels of body fat, muscle, and stores of essential nutrients. Many people in the acting industry may choose to lose or gain weight depending on the role they’re given. Receiving adequate nutrition through a well-balanced diet is critical during childhood and adolescence. Unless a doctor says otherwise, low-carb, low-fat, or other specialty diets for children who are not heavily obese are unhealthy because they deprive the body of the building blocks of cells (namely energy and lipids in the above examples)

Rumination has also been reported in developmentally normal children and adults who experience regurgitation of previously swallowed food, without disgust, nausea or an acidic taste. The food is either chewed and reswallowed or spat out. Remission of these episodes is seen in some cases while others persist. Many claim this as a pleasurable habit. No untoward effect is noticed in many cases.