• 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)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

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
Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons
Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons

A man in central Sweden was sentenced to prison for aggravated assault on Friday after doctors noticed that both his twin sons had sustained serious and unexplained injuries. READ  

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Clocking in. File photo: Shutterstock

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial

Officials finalized plans on Friday for the "Gothenburg guinea pigs" who will test out the six-hour workday, a move it's hoped will cut down on sick leave, boost efficiency, and ultimately save Sweden money. READ  

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job
Photo: Gunnar Lundmark/TT

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job

Three Swedish soldiers risk prison after they were found to be drunk while guarding Stockholm's Royal Palace. The men, who were all armed at the time, were charged on Friday. READ  

Stockholm
What do the Swedes do when summer's over?
Photo: Isabela Vrba

What do the Swedes do when summer's over?

The heatwave is well and truly over, the days are getting shorter, and winter is coming. With this in mind, The Local's Isabela Vrba chatted to ten Stockholmers about how they plan to tackle the autumn. READ  

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend
Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend

Swedes are spending more than ever on makeup - and a growing chunk is going directly to their fingernails, new figures showed on Friday. READ  

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops
The pharmacy section of a grocery store. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops

After a drastic increase in the number of paracetamol poisonings in Sweden, authorities have said the drug should only be available in pharmacies. READ  

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden
File photo: Andreas Hagerman/Flickr

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden

After finding traces of listeria in ham sold in Sweden, food companies decided on Friday to recall several Danish cold cuts. READ  

Sweden Floods
More rain expected as floods hit day four
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

More rain expected as floods hit day four

UPDATED: Sweden's floods showed no signs of abating over Thursday night, with highways closed, emergency teams working overtime, and more rain on the way. READ  

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans
An Ikea city centre store in Hamburg. Photo: TT

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans

Swedish furniture giant Ikea has opened its first store in the former Yugoslavia, near Croatia's capital Zagreb. The move marks the company's first step in an expansion to the Balkans market. READ  

Elections 2014
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'

With national elections around the corner, political scientist Stig-Björn Ljunggren says there's a hive of activity behind the scenes, and that the right-wing nationalist party could end up being the key player. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Politics
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Society
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching August 20th
Society
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Blog updates

17 August

Sea Fever (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as its not something I take any pleasure in writing. After much deliberation I have made the heartbreaking decision to abandon my trip after 1200km due to reoccurring injury. It is not a decision I have made lightly and it is one that has been truly devastating..." READ »

 

17 August

St. Louis strong (Blogweiser) »

"It’s typically a bad sign when my hometown makes news in Sweden. St. Louis was in the headlines here a few years ago when a tornado struck the airport. The city also caught attention after a politician talked about ‘legitimate rape’. Now, shooting and riots this week in Ferguson, a part of St. Louis, are..." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Society
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
National
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Society
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
Politics
'Assange will not leave until safe'
Gallery
See more images from the southern Sweden floods
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Society
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
Society
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
Shutterstock
Lifestyle
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
Politics
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
Gallery
People-watching August 16-17
National
Sweden celebrates 200 years of peace
Society
Top ten literal Swedish words
Politics
'Terror training should be illegal': Liberal Party
Gallery
Swedes talk about 200 years of national peace
Politics
Islamic extremist shakes Sweden with TV threat
National
Teacher fined for 'Hitler salute' in German class
Features
Kiruna residents talk life in a town on the move
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
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

706
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