Anorexia starts from special beliefs: beliefs about themselves, body image, control and perception of beauty. These beliefs are tightly connected to strong emotions – both negative and positive.

These “Beliefs+ Emotions+ action” form the long-term memory in the brain.
So, why do these memories get so ingrained in a person’s brain that nothing seems to change them?

This happens because these “Beliefs + Emotions+ action” actually change the structure of a person brain. Experiments have shown that for short-term memories to become long-term ones, a new protein has to be made in brain cell (neuron).

The experiments also show that short-term memory becomes a long-term one when a chemical in the neuron called protein kinase A, moves from the body of the neuron into its nucleus, where our genes are stored. The protein then turns on a gene to make another protein that alters the structure of the nerve endings, so that it grows new connections between the neurons (brain cells).

Why I am telling you this scientific stuff – is to show you that Beliefs are not just something intangible, Beliefs can actually change the structure of the brain (brain cells and connections between the brain cells).

It seems reasonable to me that the real cure for anorexia is to change the sufferers Beliefs about themself, body image, control and perception of beauty. These new Beliefs should also be emotionalized: this is important. These new “beliefs + emotions+ action “will form new long-term memories and new chemicals will form in the brain cells changing the brain structure in a new positive way.

The same process occurs in learning. We learn something, we believe it is factual, we emotionalise it, and we use in over and over (action). Why nothing seems to be of help for many anorexics?

This is because nothing so far has evoked strong emotions in them. Nothing has inspired them to change their mind or stop their anorexic ways. They can find nothing to believe in more than they can believe in the anorexia: it is all powerful.

Anorexia just can’t be taken away from them; anorexia can only be replaced with something they believe in more than their disorder. Changing the person’s beliefs is the real cure for anorexia.

Changing beliefs for the anorexic can only happen on the subconscious level: the level where our feelings and emotions live. This can only be done with beliefs+ emotions+ action the same way they got their anorexia in the first place.
The best people who can help a sufferer with this are people who are close, like a mother, father, spouse, sibling or a very close friend.

People who are close to the sufferer can affect the subconscious mind of a person much deeper and easier than anyone else (including therapists, doctors and psychiatrists). Anorexics need family support much more than anyone else.
But they also need a process to affect the subconscious mind and without this it is doubtful they will recover.

This process must contain Beliefs+ Emotions+ Actions the same as they used before only positive ones not the negative anorexic ones. Luckily there are such processes available to help today they are call neuroplasticity treatments. To read more about anorexia help go to

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Irina Webster MD is a Director of Women Health Issues Program. She is an author and a public speaker. To read more about anorexia help go to