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Homeopathic Medicines for Bulimia Nervosa

Bulimia Nervosa also simply called bulimia is a serious life threatening disorder in which a person binge eats, or  eats an excessive quantity of food in one sitting followed by self induced vomiting or purging (evacuating bowels by use of laxative, enemas) to get rid of consumed food, shed calories and prevent weight gain. Laxatives are substances that loosen stool and increase bowel movement and enemas is a procedure in which fluid is injected into the in rectum to empty bowels. The sufferer may also use drugs to lose weight, or exercise excessively, follow strict dieting or fasting in between the episodes of binge eating. Homeopathic medicines for bulimia nervosa like Lycopodium and Calc. Carb can effectively help manage the disorder. Homeopathic medicines for bulimia

The sufferer mostly has a normal weight needed as per the age and height or sometimes they are overweight. They have a fear of gaining weight and are not satisfied with their body shape and weight. They have constant thoughts in mind about an ideal body shape and weight they should have sometimes influenced by as shown on media, magazines or from pressure from society, family.

As per diagnostic criteria adopted by DSM-5 (DSM = Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) to diagnose bulimia nervosa, a person must have repeated episodes of binge eating followed by excessive or inappropriate measures taken to avoid weight gain and this should happen for at least once a week for a consistent period of 3 months and the sufferer should be over concerned about his / her body weight, shape and physical appearance.

Homeopathic Medicines for Bulimia Nervosa

Treatment with well selected constitutional medicines in homeopathy carry a great scope to recover from this condition. The constitutional medicine is a remedy selected after considering the totality of an individual’s symptoms both psychological as well as physical symptoms including overall personality and behaviours. These medicines are selected individually for every person after detailed case analysis. These medicines mainly work on treating its root cause which is mostly psychological in origin. These medicines are excellent to bring recovery in mild to moderate cases. However in severe cases where life threatening complications have arrived like severe electrolyte imbalance, major heart or kidney problems then urgent help from conventional mode of treatment should be opted.   

  1. Lycopodium – For Bulimia with Bloated Abdomen

Lycopodium is prepared from plant Lycopodium Clavatum commonly known as club moss belonging to the family lycopodiaceae. It is a suitable medicine when bulimia is there with a bloated abdomen. Persons needing it have excessive hunger and eat a lot, the more they eat the more the urge to eat increases. Sour belching and heartburn are other complaints they often face. They have a poor self esteem and low self confidence levels. They are also very concerned about their image. 

  1. Calcarea Carb – When Person having Bulimia is Overweight

This medicine is suited to people in whom the appetite is increased to a great extent and who are overweight. With an increase of appetite they may also have complaints of exhaustion, weakness. They usually feel weak when walking or when climbing stairs. They do not want to do any exertion or other work. They may also have distended, hard abdomen and heartburn. The glands in the neck may also be swollen among them. The females may have complaints of suppressed periods along with above symptoms. 

  1. Staphisagria – Suitable for with Low Self Esteem, Poor Confidence 

This medicine is prepared from seeds of plant Delphinium staphisagria also called stavesacre. This plant belongs to family ranunculaceae. It is best suited for treating bulimia in people who have low self esteem, poor confidence level and have traits of self pity. They feel they are worthless. They also are very sensitive to the opinions of other people about them and what other people say to them with a tendency to get easily offended. They also feel depressed and eat large quantities of food. They mostly have a tendency to binge on sweets. Following eating excessive food they feel guilty for it. 

  1. China – For Episodes of Binge Eating at Night with Weakness

Homeopathic medicine China is prepared from dried bark of plant Cinchona Officinalis also commonly called Peruvian bark. This plant belongs to family rubiaceae. This medicine mostly helps when there are episodes of excessive eating mainly at night time. People needing it also feel weak and have low energy levels. Digestive complaints are also prominent among them that mostly includes bloated abdomen, gas and loose stool (diarrhoea).

  1. Ignatia – For People who are Sad or Depressed 

Ignatia is prepared from seeds of plant Ignatia Amara also called St. Ignatius Bean. This plant belongs to family loganiaceae. It is most beneficial to treat bulimia in persons who are sad, worried, depressed or have a history of some grief. They may also have sudden mood swings. It also suits persons who have traits of perfectionism or obsessions and who are over concerned with their appearance. They are hard on themselves when it comes to weight and have a desire to have an ideal body image. They may also have low self esteem and have some sort of frustrations in their lives. 

6. Natrum Mur – For People with Sensitive Nature or Depressed Mood

Its use is also indicated for persons who are sensitive or have depressed moods with increased intake of food. They may also have weakness and tend to get exhausted easily. The skin is dry in them. The sexual desire is also reduced among them. Females needing it may have irregular or absent periods. 

7. Sacharum Album – For Bulimia with Obesity

Sacharum Album is especially used when there is bulimia with obesity. People needing it do compulsive eating. Soon after eating the appetite returns with an empty feeling in the stomach. They also lack energy and feel weak. Their skin is also extremely dry.

  1. Antimonium Crudum – For People with Chronic Indigestion and Bulimia

Antimonium Crudum is a useful medicine for persons who have an excessive appetite and eat food beyond how much their stomach can digest. They suffer from chronic indigestion and have distended abdomen with rumbling. They also have heartburn and nausea. A peculiar finding in them is a thickly coated white tongue. Another complaint that they face is excessive weakness. There is also a tendency to grow fat in persons needing it. 

Risk Factors

The real reason for bulimia is not known yet. However, there are certain factors that are thought to play a role in its development and increase its risk.

Genetic factors 

People having a family history of bulimia are at risk to develop the same pointing towards the possibility of a genetic link involved in its development. 

Emotional and psychological complaints

People having depression, anxiety disorders are at risk of it. Certain personality traits like having low self – esteem, self critical nature, having anger issues, impulsiveness or thinking negatively about themselves, over striving for perfection, over concern about body size, weight and shape put a person at its risk. People having a history of some mental trauma in past and long term psychological stress are also predisposed to develop it. People who are sensitive and influenced by social media are also at risk. 

Women and girls are more at risk to develop bulimia as compared to men and boys. It is estimated that females are nine times more at risk of it as compared to males.

Bulimia mostly tends to affect people of late teenage and early adulthood age groups.

People who were overweight / obese in childhood or in teenage are at risk of bulimia.

Dieting is another risk factor for developing it. Most people having bulimia goes on a strict low calorie diet between episodes of excessive eating (binging). This can trigger a desire to again binge and purge

Decreasing levels of chemical serotonin in the brain is also thought to play a role as per some researches.


The main symptom of bulimia is eating excessive quantities of food in one go with inability to control oneself to stop it followed by forcible vomiting to avoid weight gain. Some people having it tend to use laxatives, enemas, diuretics to avoid weight gain. Few excessively exercise or use herbs to lose weight. While many tend to do fasting or take low calories diets on a strict basis between episodes of excessive eating. They have a fear of gaining weight and always keep on thinking about one’s body shape and weight. They tend to avoid eating in front of others and go to the bathroom soon after eating. Other symptoms include having negative self – image, always thinking they are fat and keeps complaining about it to others, depressed mood and mood swings. Their teeth may be damaged or the teeth are stained from stomach acid, the glands in the neck and face may be swollen. There may also arise swelling on hands and feet and there may be sores / calluses on the knuckles of hands. They may feel exhausted, weak, have unhealthy or dry skin and have gastric troubles (like constipation, diarrhoea, indigestion, heartburn, bloating, constipation) or have low sex drive (libido). In women the periods may get irregular or absent. 


The complications are several and some are severe and life threatening. Complications in cases of bulimia include electrolyte imbalance, digestive issues (like stomach ulcers), esophagitis – inflamed esophagus (food pipe), rupture of esophageal wall, hyperglycaemia (low blood sugar levels than the normal) following vomiting. Other complications that can arise include severe gum disease or tooth decay, dehydration, kidney failure, heart problems (rapid heartbeat, irregularity of heartbeat, palpitations or in severe cases heart failure). Infertility is another complication that can arise. The person may also have poor self esteem, or faces difficulty with social life, may develop anxiety, depression or indulge in abuse of alcohol or drugs or they may also develop self harming tendencies, suicidal thoughts / attempts.  

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