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Rumination (eating disorder)

Rumination is an eating disorder in which the sufferer brings up partially digested food and rechews it before swallowing it or spitting it out.

Rumination disorder (originally childhood rumination disorder) primarily affects children and typically occurs within the first 3-12 months of age and can lead to the child becoming malnourished. While rumination disorder may begin in childhood or infancy, adults may also have this chronic disorder.

There is presently no known cure nor cause. While those diagnosed with this condition in childhood may 'grow out of it', it is by no means a medical fact that they are bound to do so by adolescence or adulthood.

In some animals, known as ruminants, this is a natural and healthy part of digestion and is not considered an eating disorder. However, in other species (including humans), such behavior is atypical and potentially dangerous as the esophagus can be damaged by frequent exposure to stomach acids.

Rumination is also associated with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, and can be the result of one's apprehension and nervousness after eating a normal meal. For those with purging behaviors, rumination can take place when the option of getting rid of a meal via throwing up is not available (thus, one might feel worried and visibly upset).

Rumination has also been reported in developmentally normal children and adults who experience regurgitation of previously swallowed food, without disgust, nausea or an acidic taste. The food is either chewed and reswallowed or spat out. Remission of these episodes is seen in some cases while others persist. Many claim this as a pleasurable habit.[citation needed] No untoward effect is noticed in many cases.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Rumination_(eating_disorder)". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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