Friday, August 12, 2011

Tanorexia and Tanning: It's Bad!

Tanning releases opiods, the same addictive chemicals in morphine and heroin. Frequent tanners experience withdrawl when they don't get these opioids, just like drug users!
Most tanners report mood enhancement, relaxation and socialization while soaking up the sun. But tanorexics become very competitive about tanning, and may actually hate their skin and view it as untolerably pale, in the same way anorexics view themselves as hatefully fat even when they're starving. Tanorexics experience the most serious withdrawl symptoms, which include intense anxiety, nausea, and jitters. Since UV light from the sun and tanning beds creates a feeling of euphoria in the brain, it's also likely tanners feel depressed when they are removed from their lights for too long.

Since any tan at all is evidence of sun damage, and tanners continue to ignore medical risks, this has led many dermatologists to push that UV light tanning addiction be recognized as a substance abuse disorder. And just like any substance abuse order, we already have celebrity posterchildren. Wikipedia says "notable figures known to have suffered from tanorexia are Christine Swanson, Jordan Cohen, the British celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal and the cast of the MTV reality show Jersey Shore."

1 comment:

  1. I have a picture of me in 1975 with a tan. That was the last year I got one and then, it was only because my boyfriend had a part-time job cleaning pools and I liked to help.

    Tans and stilettos. Full evidence that judgement can't be passed from one generation to another by DNA.