[ byoo-lim-ee-uh, -lee-mee-uh, boo-, buh- ]
See synonyms for bulimia on Thesaurus.com
  1. Also called binge-purge syn·drome [binj-purj-sin-drohm], /ˈbɪndʒˈpɜrdʒ ˌsɪn droʊm/, bu·lim·i·a ner·vo·sa [nur-voh-suh]. /nɜrˈvoʊ sə/. Psychiatry. a habitual disturbance in eating behavior mostly affecting young women of normal weight, characterized by frequent episodes of grossly excessive food intake followed by self-induced vomiting to avert weight gain.: Compare anorexia nervosa.

  2. Also called hyperphagia. Pathology. abnormally voracious appetite or unnaturally constant hunger.

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Origin of bulimia

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English, from New Latin, from Greek boulīmía “extreme hunger,” equivalent to bou- intensive prefix (derivative of bou-, stem of boûs ox) + līm(ós) “hunger” + -ia -ia
  • Sometimes bou·lim·i·a [boo-lim-ee-uh, -lee-mee-uh, buh-] /buˈlɪm i ə, -ˈli mi ə, bə-/

Words Nearby bulimia

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How to use bulimia in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for bulimia


/ (bjuːˈlɪmɪə) /

  1. pathologically insatiable hunger, esp when caused by a brain lesion

  2. Also called: bulimia nervosa a disorder characterized by compulsive overeating followed by vomiting: sometimes associated with anxiety about gaining weight

Origin of bulimia

C17: from New Latin, from Greek boulimia, from bous ox + limos hunger

Derived forms of bulimia

  • bulimic, noun, adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for bulimia


[ bōō-lēmē-ə ]

  1. An eating disorder characterized by uncontrolled rapid ingestion of large quantities of food over a short period of time, followed by self-induced vomiting, fasting, and other measures to prevent weight gain. It is most common among young women and teenage girls.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Cultural definitions for bulimia


An eating disorder that is characterized by episodic binge eating followed by feelings of guilt or depression and sometimes self-induced vomiting.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.