Viewpoint: Eating disorder wannabes
- By: Deborah Cohen
I first heard about “wannarexia” while sitting on a bus. A group of teenage girls were dissecting each of their classmates. One girl in particular received marked censure. “She's such a wannarexic,” said one. The others all agreed. Forced to admit that I was out of the loop with teen jargon I turned to the internet, the bible of youth trends.
Wannarexia is a pejorative term and, says Urban Dictionary (www.urbandictionary.com), is “an imaginary disease most commonly found amongst preteen to teenage, overweight females who claim to have the eating disorder anorexia, but they do not meet the criteria.” It continues, “In fact, they do not have an eating disorder at all. Most wannarexic people feel that anorexia is a ‘quick fix’ to lose weight and that it is glamorous.”
Wannarexia is the latest word to come from the fast paced world of eating disorder terminology. Although the internet has