ICYMI Health features what we're reading this week.
This week, we read two unusual pieces that expanded the way we think about disordered eating. One article explored the cultural factors stacked up against women from immigrant families with eating disorders -- particularly the mismatch between parents forcing food on them (while simultaneously expecting them to be slim), and the pervasive misconception that anorexia is a white woman's problem.
The other, a first-person essay, took a deep dive into anorexia's role in literature and history, shining a light on writing by "glamorous" female anorexics -- from Silvia Plath to Louise Glück -- continues to haunt and trigger modern-day women.
Read on and tell us in the comments: What did you read and love this week?
1. Instruments Of Oppression -- HuffPost Highline
U.S. policy on providing humanitarian aid excludes abortion without exception, a stipulation that threatens the health of women around the world.
One woman arrived at a clinic in Kenya after putting an unknown chemical reactive in her vagina. Local health workers described it as a 'bomb,' because it had exploded.
2. The Complex Psychology of the Geek -- Pacific Standard
Engaging with geek culture -- including table top role-playing games and making and wearing superhero costumes -- says quite a bit about your personality.
For many, geek culture is a way to act out fantasies of being powerful and influential.
3. What Really Happens When You Get Shot -- Wired
Uncontrolled bleeding and subsequent blood loss is the number one most preventable cause of death on the battlefield.
It isn’t uncommon to see heroes on the silver screen fighting courageously through their extremity wounds, when in fact the disruption of peripheral or junctional arteries can cause irreparable harm within minutes.
4. 'Eat Up': How Cultural Messages Can Lead To Eating Disorders -- NPR
The misconception that only white women get eating disorders creates an additional hurdle for the children of immigrant parents who struggle with disordered eating.
Sometimes, immigrant parents try to guilt their kids into eating, even once they are full, by saying things like, 'When I was growing up, I didn't have this food. You have to eat it.' They're small messages, but they are deep.
5. Tough Medicine -- The New Yorker
In his new memoir, "The Death of Cancer” pioneer oncologist Vincent DeVita suggests that our approach to treating cancer is completely backward.
Physicians at one of the world’s greatest cancer hospitals denying their patients a potentially life-saving treatment because their way felt better. Stories like this are why DeVita believes that a hundred thousand cancer patients in the United States die needlessly every year.
6. There Was Once A Girl -- Slate
Literature, even the historical type, glorifies anorexia, making it even more difficult for modern-day women to escape the disorder's clutches.
Most of all, I remember the moment in The Hanged Man when the heroine declares: 'I will be thin and pure like a glass cup.' A glass cup! It seemed impossibly poetic.
7. Why The Ban On Gun Violence Research Is A Public Health Problem -- The Huffington Post
Firearms have killed more than a half a million people since 1996. So why isn't the federal government researching it?
We are seeing this every day, in every state in the country. That's why doctors are getting involved.
Also on HuffPost:
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