The Instigator
Pro (for)
6 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

We should force-feed severe anorexia nervosa sufferers

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/14/2013 Category: Health
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,979 times Debate No: 36675
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)




BOP is shared, arguments are 5,000 characters max but if they turn out to be a lot lower then that's fine by me

Can it please be noted that for this debate we are only discussing the use of force-feeding for severe sufferers who risk death from a neglect to eat or drink sufficiently.


We should not force feed suffers with anorexia nervosa. AN is a psychological disease with physical symptoms. Force feeding would treat only the symptoms and not the disease itself.
Debate Round No. 1


During this round I would first like to offer some Rebuttal for the above argument. I will then go on to explain why force-feeding would be the best way to do this.


"We should not force feed suffers with anorexia nervosa. AN is a psychological disease with physical symptoms. Force feeding would treat only the symptoms and not the disease itself."

As I'm sure you know, one common symptoms of AN is a sort of self-disgust at eating, believing it to be a shameful act. However, it is not only anorexia that brings on this symptom - studies have shown that when otherwise healthy volunteers were starved, during the re-feeding program many of the participants began to feel critical of them selves when they began to eat more again. It has been proven that on average a bmi of at least 19 must be reached before the body will come out of this 'starvation mode' where eating more is a wrong and improper act. It is therefore necessary for anorexia sufferers to gain weight so that the physical state of their body doesn't have as much of an effect on the mental i.e. physical recovery must come before mental recovery if it is to be successful. After sufferers have begun to gain weight then the counselling and therapy can be introduced, but 'force-feeding' must remain the first response for severe suffers.

-Why Force-Feeding?-

As you so rightly pointed out, AN is a "psychological disease." This means that severe sufferers can be categorised as mentally unable to tell the difference between what is good for them and what isn't. For this reason, many AN sufferers try to refuse treatment - especially the re-feeding element of therapy. In these severe cases, force-feeding is often the only way to save a sufferers life as left to their own devises as it were, sufferers would continue to restrict their eating until the starvation became too much for the body to take. However, post-treatment sufferers can see what is best for them and, according to the National Centre for Eating Disorders, a staggering 2/3 of people are glad that they received tube-feeding and "most people who are obliged or forced to get help are eventually glad that they did."



I can't think of a good rebuttal, so you win.
Debate Round No. 2


No argument at all from con?


I was going to mention that force feeding can have medical complications, but that's a weak point. Complications are better than death.

Your argument is sound, and sufficient reason has been presented in support of your claim.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Jellyfrog 5 years ago
sorry, maybe should have made that clear before...
Tube-feeding in a hospital environment e.g. PEG tube
hope this helps :)
Posted by Shadowguynick 5 years ago
How do you recommend doing this?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Nataliella 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Con conceded, and Pro used sources.