• Sweden edition
 
'Drunkorexia' on the rise in Sweden: report

'Drunkorexia' on the rise in Sweden: report

Published: 09 Feb 2012 14:13 GMT+01:00
Updated: 09 Feb 2012 14:13 GMT+01:00

“It is definitely something that is occurring here in Sweden,” said Hanna Kihlander of the national eating disorder support group Anorexia/Bulimia Kontakt (ABK) to The Local.

In many parts of the world “drunkorexia” has become an accepted expression for how the young, and especially young women faced with the demand to drink at night but remain svelte, choose to abstain from eating during the day.

In Sweden, the behaviour has been noted by those who work with sufferers from eating disorders.

According to Kihlander, the practice is probably more widespread than previously believed.

“I think it is fairly common as it is spread over so many different groups with different reasons for why they don't eat,” said Kihlander.

She thinks that starving oneself in advance to compensate for the calories imbibed at night is common, not only among those who suffer from eating disorders but also by other image conscious young people.

Some of those who choose not to eat are also approaching it from an economic standpoint. It is easier to get drunk with no food in the system.

However, this kind of behaviour means that the body is being forced to deal with poison when it is the least prepared for it.

“It can accelerate both physical and mental decay. What the effects are long term we can only imagine,” said Anders Tengström, expert on addictions from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, to daily Dagens Nyheter.

Young people of today are under enormous pressure to be perceived as successful and attractive, according to Tengström.

“The idea of a successful person is a thin person who is in control of their body and their life. Young people today know that there is calories in alcohol as well. Looking at it that way starving to be able to drink becomes a logical step in dealing with an important issue in their lives,” said Tengström to DN.

At Maria Ungdom, the Stockholm clinic that handles drunkenness and drug use among young people, this is a well known phenomenon.

“We often get young girls here who say that the reason they got so inebriated is that they had eaten so little during the day before drinking. It happens remarkably often but of course they don't admit to us that they have problems with food,” said Stefan Sparring, specialist at Maria Ungdom, to the paper.

According to the paper, a recent study shows that up to 21 percent of the girls that end up at Maria Ungdom have some sort of eating disorder to start with.

Among the boys, the corresponding figure is 2 percent.

“To us, this so called 'drunkorexia' is part of an already existing behaviour, “ said Kihlander to The Local.

“But it is important to remember that this is the name of a behaviour and not a medical diagnosis.”

The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

15:09 February 9, 2012 by Vill
Personally, I prefer "drunkulimia"
15:29 February 9, 2012 by Svensksmith
They should drink Guinness. A meal in every bottle.
15:55 February 9, 2012 by eppie
1: the problem is with alcohol abuse per se. Eating a lot and then drinking even more (because you want to get drunk) doesnot sound much better to me.

2: if there really was such heavy social pressure about staying thin why are half of all people in western country's suffering from overweight? I think Sweden is doing pretty good compared to its peers such as germany, US, UK etc. but still.

I think there is too much effort being put in this 'problem' of people eating too little which instead should be focussed more on people eating too much.
16:16 February 9, 2012 by Achilles7
"Young people of today are under enormous pressure to be perceived as successful and attractive, according to Tengström."

Well I would have thought that drinking copious amounts of alcohol and smoking like a chimney are two fine ways to ensure that you will not remain very attractive for long.

I would also like to be as attractive and successful as possible, and that is why I eat healthily, work out regularly, drink sparingly, and have never smoked a cigarette in my life. I'm always mildy bemused when people choose to act differently.
16:50 February 9, 2012 by roaringchicken92
More appropriate, Vill. And it usually has the added benefit of never again wanting to consume the drink that caused the drunkulimia.
19:05 February 9, 2012 by zooeden
Like Bob Dylan says: everybody should get stoned!!!

...and then they will get the munchies and eat :D
21:01 February 9, 2012 by yellowbluedemocrat
For an article with a headline like "Drunkorexia on the rise in Sweden," there is precious little information about how common a problem this is. Are two% of young Sweden involved in this, versus 1% five years ago? It's impossible to assess how serious a problem this is without some indication about how prevalent it is.
21:43 February 9, 2012 by dizzymoe33
So either they drink themselves to death or starve themselves to death!! Way to go just to have a good time!! Can you say losers?!
08:35 February 10, 2012 by Da Goat
yes I was gonna say give them Darwin awards but dizzy kind-a beat me! yep losers!
21:25 February 19, 2012 by MurasakiSunshine
As an American, I can say that this is very common here. I know people who will plan to go out for the weekend and not eat anything on Thursday or Friday in order to be able to drink beer and eat pizza on Saturday night when they go out. If you're drinking so much that you have to skip meals to compensate for calories, you not only have an eating problem but you have a drinking problem as well.
20:01 March 17, 2012 by chinthe1
Help! There are many of us here in Africa who are starving.Just send 2Euros per month and we can buy cheap spirits and get wasted.Thanks!
Today's headlines
National
Swedish airfares to get cheaper in 2015

Swedish airfares to get cheaper in 2015

Sweden is set to buck the European trend of rising air prices with fares expected to drop next year according to a new report. READ  

National
Swede's homemade submarine nets fortune
Eric Westerberg's homemade submarine Isabelle. Photo: PS.nu

Swede's homemade submarine nets fortune

A Swedish submarine enthusiast who spent over 3,500 hours making his own vessel has sold his prized possession for 705,000 kronor ($98,500) in an online auction. READ  

National
Cops reported for making 'Roma' comment

Cops reported for making 'Roma' comment

Police in northern Sweden have been reported to the Equality Ombudsman for describing a wanted suspect as having a "Roma appearance." READ  

Donald Duck and Zlatan get Swedish votes
A political career for Zlatan? Some fans seem to want to see that. Photo: Peter Dejong/TT

Donald Duck and Zlatan get Swedish votes

The Bilderberg Group, the Satanic Initiative and Adolf Hitler all received votes in Sweden’s general election, according to a list released by the country’s electoral authority. READ  

Sport
Stockholm fails bid to host Euro 2020 games
The Swedish team in action. Photo: TT

Stockholm fails bid to host Euro 2020 games

Sweden's capital has missed out on a chance to host any Euro 2020 games, with Copenhagen the only Scandinavian city among the thirteen winning locations. READ  

Vicar: God rejects fans of women priests
Antje Jackelén, Archbishop of Uppsala, is the first woman to head the Swedish church. Photo: Stig-Åke Jönsson/TT

Vicar: God rejects fans of women priests

A Swedish priest has been fired after telling his congregation that people who support female priests would be rejected by God - despite the fact that his own church is led by a woman. READ  

Analysis
Women set to dominate top post-election jobs
Margot Wallström (right) could become Stefan Löfven's new Minister of Foreign Affairs. Photo: TT

Women set to dominate top post-election jobs

Sweden could soon get a female Foreign Minister, Fredrik Reinfeldt's ousted Moderate Party is preparing for its first woman leader and the grandmother of actor Hugh Grant's son is being tipped as Parliament's next Speaker. READ  

National
Sweden protests over Russian plane incursions
A Gripen plane was scrambled to see off the Russian planes. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Sweden protests over Russian plane incursions

UPDATED: Sweden has summoned the Russian Ambassador for a dressing down after two Russian planes violated Swedish airspace last week. READ  

Elections 2014
'Good prospects' for Alliance co-operation

'Good prospects' for Alliance co-operation

UPDATED: Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven says he is positive that his party can co-operate with the former governing Alliance on some issues. READ  

Lifestyle
Introducing...Astrid Lindgren
Pippi Longstocking comes to live at the Astrid Lindgren theme park. Photo: TT

Introducing...Astrid Lindgren

The creator of Pippi Longstocking, Astrid Lindgren, is the most translated author from Sweden, and has filled children's imaginations since the 1940s. The Local finds out why her work has become a timeless classic. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
The 'black gold' of Sweden's west coast.
National
West Sweden prepares for the 2014 lobster premiere
Society
What's on in Sweden
Politics
How Sweden Democrats went mainstream
Politics
Scandinavia and Scotland: closer links?
Gallery
Property of the week - Eskilstuna
Blog updates

20 September

How a Frog Can Save the Environment (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"What we do we imagine when we think of children enjoying nature? Perhaps it’s fishing, marveling at lightning bugs on a muggy July day or blowing on the wispy petals of a dandelion to make a special wish. But perhaps most iconic of the playful innocence in childhood is hopping after and trying to catch..." READ »

 

19 September

Editor’s blog (The Local Sweden) »

"Happy Friday readers! It sure has been a exciting week in Sweden, where we’re set to get a new Prime Minister after Fredrik Reinfeldt stepped down following Sunday’s elections. The Local blogged live from the key political gatherings across Stockholm. Why not re-visit the action by taking a look at our photos, tweets, videos and analysis? Since the..." READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Society
How I became a surf blogger when I moved to Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Society
Why is Stockholm's Södermalm so cool?
Gallery
People-watching: September 11th
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Politics
Five possible election outcomes
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Gallery
Property of the week - Hornstull, Stockholm
Analysis
Five differences between the UK and Sweden
Welshman Jonny Luck is now a chef in Sweden
Society
How I opened my own restaurant in Sweden's Malmö
Sponsored Article
Stockholm tech fest: relive the magic
Gallery
People-watching September 8th
Photo: TT
Politics
Feminists fight for first seats
Politics
Immigration cut push from Sweden Democrats
Sheryl Sandberg says women have "low expectations"
Tech
Facebook exec talks women's limits in Swedish business
Politics
Left Party calls for justice and equality
Politics
Green Party wants 'better world' for kids
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

857
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN