Books on eating disorders in men

‘Anorexia: A Son’s Battle, A Mother’s War’ by Debbie Roche


Blurb for the book: It aims to expose the indicative and sometimes secretive characteristics of anorexia nervosa through the perspective of a mother. Referring to difficult lived experiences of caring for a teenage son with anorexia nervosa, this book is both powerful and emotional. Furthermore, it makes reference to the medical definitions of eating disorders, provides an historical context as well as highlighting useful practices to aid effective support and recovery.

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‘Becoming John: Amorexia’s Not Just For Girls’ by John Evans

Blurb for the book/about the author: What image comes to mind when you think of Anorexia?   Size Zero models floating down the catwalk?  Pictures of celebrities in magazines plastered with headlines screaming “Thin”, “Starvation”, “Skeleton”?  Or a young girl, wasting away in front of those who love her, desperately trying to be thin?  I’m sure very few of you will see a young man pounding the treadmill to get rid of an extra few calories.   Nor will you think of the same young man throwing his dinner in the bin because the thought of eating anything repulses him.  These are the images that John Evans thinks of every day, because John Evans is that young man, and Anorexia Nervosa has been his life for fifteen years.

In Becoming John: Anorexia’s Not Just For Girls, John seeks to explode the myth that Eating Disorders are a female-only problem.  Frustrated at the dearth of literature devoted to the subject of Eating Disorders in males, he has attempted to fill that void, at least in part.  There are many thousands of male sufferers in Britain, some suffering in silence, some receiving treatment, some, like the author, on the road to recovery.  It is hoped that “Becoming John” will at least provide a voice for this men and maybe even help some of those with no idea of where to turn to or where to find the strength to seek help.   Tracing his illness from its origins in the sadness and bullying of his childhood through to the obsessions and the rituals of his adult life, John details how his relationship with Anorexia became the most important factor in his existence.  Extracts from his diary detail the struggles of his four-month inpatient admission, attempting to battle his demons and to carve his niche as the only male on a ten-patient ward.  John’s story details the occasional highs and much more pervasive lows of living with Anorexia, ever aware of the damage being done but feeling utterly impotent when looking for a way to fight back.

By sharing his Eating Disorder with a public audience, John hopes to further weaken the hold it has over him, because nothing hurts Anorexia more than being exposed and being attacked from all angles.  Maybe too, you may find something within these pages that helps you better understand the mind of an anorexic, whether you be a Health Care Professional, a carer, or someone who, like John at the start of his journey, just can’t understand why they don’t eat something.

Becoming John: Anorexia’s Not Just For Girls is a rollercoaster of emotions and belief, of fight and of hopelessness.  Something in these pages will touch you, something in these pages could help you fight back.

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‘Boys Get Anorexia Too: Coping with Male Eating Disorders in the Family’ by Jenny Langley (Published by Paul Chapman Educational Publishing

Blurb for the book: Eating disorders are usually associated with females but there are an increasing number of males affected by anorexia and bulimia. Often there is a link between male eating disorders and athletic prowess, and the quest for physical perfection can result in damaging behaviours associated with diet, supplements and exercise.

This unique and important book combines a mine of information with a readable and engaging case study. The author was shocked and horrified when her son developed anorexia at the age of twelve. Having a research background, she naturally turned her attention to finding out as much as she could about how best to combat this terrifying illness. Her son is now fully recovered and has supported this book that not only describes their experiences, but also provides a practical guide on how to cope with male eating disorders.

A much needed resource for other parents in similar situations, the book will also be of interest to people working in health centres, clinics and hospitals. It will also be invaluable for youth support groups, teachers and sports coaching staff, who are often the first to be aware of concerns about eating disorders in young men.

About the author: Jenny is a Chartered Accountant who worked in the pharmaceutical industry for many years. Latterly she has also worked in the Financial Services Industry (for six years) as a pharmaceutical and healthcare analyst and salesperson. She is a member of the Eating Disorder Association and a volunteer member of their Self Help Network.

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Fit to Die: ‘Men and Eating Disorders’ by Anna Paterson (Published Lucky Duck)

Blurb for the book: It would be a mistake to think that eating and body image problems are experienced only by women. Anna draws the reader’s attention to the characteristic and special difficulties for men, including athletics, body building and eating; depression and self-esteem; eating disorders and homosexuality.

Like all her books she offers a comprehensive overview and contributes information, advice and hope. This is a book for those affected and those who want to help them.

About the author: Anna has established herself as a leading author in the field of eating disorders and combines her personal experiences with an extensive research interest. Her two previous books published by Lucky Duck were winner and special commendation in the NASEN/TES book awards and we expect this publication to be equally well received.

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‘Hope with Eating Disorders’ by Lynn Crilly

Blurb for the book: When we discuss eating disorders, there’s a tendency to focus on the sufferer. Yet there are millions of concerned parents, carers, friends and relatives throughout the world who are confused and frustrated – Both by their own personal circumstances, and by the abundance of potentially misleading information that is out there. Hope with Eating Disorders is a must-read for anyone concerned about a loved one with food or body issues.

Hope with Eating Disorders is a uniquely optimistic and informative guide, in times when the outlook on health and body image can seem increasingly bleak. It first offers real understanding of the mind-set of someone with an eating disorder or body confidence issue. It then provides an extensive, easily comprehensible and unbiased description of the various treatments available. The book emphasises that eating disorders can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, race or social background. It does not apportion blame, but offers practical solutions.

Hope with Eating Disorders features interviews with some of the World’s leading experts in the field. It also features celebrity interviews, giving a crucial insight into the pressures faced by a sector of society who are often blamed for body insecurities.

Most importantly, however, Hope with Eating Disorders sends the message that real, full and lasting recovery is possible, despite what we are so often told.

From body confidence concerns, overeating, compulsive exercise, diet pill addiction, issues arising from professional or amateur sports, anorexia or bulimia, if you are concerned about a friend, relative or colleague, this book will answer the frequently asked question – What can I do?

About the author:Lynn Crilly lives in Surrey withher husband Kevin and their twindaughters.Through using her unique and veryeffective form of counselling she hasnow established herself as one ofthe country’s leading private therapists,working with people from allwalks of life, ages and genders. Sheis admired for her passion and understanding– something she attributes to the strength and loyaltyof her family and friends, with whom she spends as much timeas possible.

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Please eat…: A mother’s struggle to free her teenage son from anorexia’ by Beverly Mattocks

Blurb for the book: Bright, popular and a star on the rugby pitch, 15 year old Ben had everything he could want. But then food-loving Ben began to systematically starve himself. At the same time his urge to exercise became extreme. In a matter of months Ben lost one quarter of his bodyweight as he plunged into anorexia nervosa, an illness that threatened to destroy him.

Please eat… A mother’s struggle to free her teenage son from anorexia is his mother’s heart-breaking yet inspirational account of how she watched helplessly as her son transformed into someone she didn’t recognise, physically and mentally. It also describes how, with the help of his parents and therapist, and through his own determination, Ben slowly began to recover and re-build his life.

Read the first six chapters here  at:

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The Invisible Man: A Self Help Guide for Men With Eating Disorders, Compulsive Exercise and Bigorexia’ by John F Morgan (Published by Routeledge)

Blurb for the book: Increasingly boys and men are suffering with eating disorders and related body image problems. Some have full blown conditions, such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia, binge eating disorder, compulsive exercising or bigorexia. Others are distressed by slightly lesser degrees of distorted eating or over-exercise and seek ways of overcoming their problems.

The Invisible Man applies the latest research to produce a practical, problem-focused self-help manual for men with eating disorders and body image problems. Divided into four sections, this evidence-based survival kit covers the wider cultural context of male body image problems; features unique to men; science fact and science fiction; a 7 stage approach to treatment.

By combining the science of cognitive behaviour therapy with motivational development and problem-solving therapies, The Invisible Man will provide help to all men with body image disorders, as well as families and professionals involved in their care.

About the author: John F Morgan is head of the Yorkshire Centre for Eating Disorders. John’s research addresses causes and treatments of eating disorders, and he has written commentaries on eating and body image disorders in journals and in the media.

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