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This new weight loss method is unbelievable! You just have to try it out.

Finally I can eat everything my heart desires and don't have to worry about watching my weight,' says my friend Saiqa, with a beef cheeseburger in one hand and a chocolate milkshake in the other. I shudder as she goes into the details. Saiqa, my best friend since childhood, is currently the unfortunate victim of bulimia. Lost in ignorance, she fails to realize how she is innocently venturing into dangerous territory.

Bulimia…the disease is familiar to many. Or is it? We all know how easily countless people worldwide fall prey to bulimia every year. Victims regard it as a contented way to lose weight. Who likes to go through the agony of depriving yourself of all the mouthwatering treats around, just to maintain a slim figure? Who wants to torture oneself with disgusting, but 'healthy' Foods, just so that they can manage to fit into that gorgeous dress in the boutique window, which is at least three sizes smaller? Enter Bulimia…
the effortless way to lose weight (or so people think). For those who are not familiar with this term, let me explain. Bulimia is when people binge (eat huge amounts) and then try to 'lose it' by throwing up. Imagining someone eating three plates during a meal, and then spending fifteen minutes in the bathroom, throwing up. Hope you get the picture.

Bulimia isn't the only self-inflicted 'weight loss' disease, that's around.

Anorexia nervosa is also undoubtedly a term well known to many. Anorexia nervosa is a wasting disease. The physical signs of semi starvation reflect an underlying psychological distress. Most anorexics are teenagers and 90 percent of the diagnosed cases are female (same applies to bulimia).

Anorexia develops from reducing weight by extreme dieting. Even anorexics, who have lost a considerable amount of weight, consider themselves to be too fat. They become obsessed with food and eat less and less, ignoring and resisting the pangs of hunger. Many become obsessed with diet, exercise and death. I remember once reading a feature article about a girl who finally resorted to cutting off flesh from her arms and legs just because no matter no much she dieted, the needle on the weight machine refused to budge.
Now, with this entire sequence going on, naturally the next point to be covered would be reasons. Why would anyone go through all this? Bulimia isn't all plain sailing. Every time you throw up, along with food you also throw up stomach acid. Ever wondered what affect all that acid was having on you? Not just harming your body, but also harming your teeth. I know harm to teeth sounds very insignificant (not to mention very dumb!) when being compared to the serious health harm that's been done, but I am just bringing this up so that people concerned with their own appearances can realize what they're doing. And when anorexics diet, they do miss out on certain nutrients. Even without involving that, I find it hard to believe that people would actually fancy looking like Morticia Addams, with their bones sticking out, and thin, sparse hair!

The causes are complex, but most are to do with anxiety over 'growing up, peer pressure and poor self-image or low self-esteem. Surveys say that about half the girls and one third of the boys responding mention that they are concerned about their body image. Many admire the 'supermodels' and attempt to copy them. Some even suffer from inferiority complex. Ever had a sister

Or a close friend who was extremely gorgeous, and manages to maintain that perfect physique while eating everything that she wanted? If you did,

Then you have a pretty clear idea of what I am trying to say. I don't mind Admitting that I once myself resorted to the 'throwing up' method of Trying to lose weight, when I was 14. Being a biology student has its advantages. I soon learnt the details of the physical harm, which I was inflicting upon myself, and finally gave that habit up. A funny fact the whole time I had the habit, my parents had no idea what I was doing. Fancy that!

My parents pay a lot of attention to me, just because I am an only child.

Their not knowing about my destructive habits prove how potentially harmful these practices are, and how easily anyone can succumb to it. Ignorance may be bliss but knowledge is power. In other developed countries, there are help lines and counseling centers for every possible serious aspect. Bangladesh seems to somehow lack in these facilities, being unaware of the dangers. Don't be a victim help yourself. And if you feel that you're already too deep into this problem, then please don't hesitate to contact an adult. It doesn't necessarily have to be your parents, even a friendly teacher or an elder sibling will do. The end justifies the means. Just remember that no matter which approach you choose to take, you must succeed in curing yourself of this disease. And remember…
ignorance is not always bliss…

By Jennifer Ashraf

Mission : IBA admission

Once upon a time, Petre Patter wanted to get into IBA,

For three long months, Patter only chattered about IBA.
Finally, in the admission test, Patter was battered by IBA."

Thank God my story didn't end up that way. Yes, yes, you guessed right. I made it into IBA. Here's the modern-day fairytale of how I managed:

Now for those who need more information on IBA, I'd like to clarify matters. The Institute of Business Administration (IBA), is an institution under the University of Dhaka. It enrolls students for Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), and Mastes of Business Administration (MBA) programs. IBA is accredited by people as the the best local institution providing BBA and MBA degrees.

So, all of you out there, intending to build careers in Business Management, pack your bags, kiss the big foot, and hop into IBA. By the way, I'd like to inform you that there are about 5000 other competitors who would also like to study there. The IBA authorities are going to allow only about 70 students to enroll into their programs. Now it doesn't sound so sweet, right?

So getting into IBA isn't easy. The competition is fierce. So naturally, the preparation must be on a rigorous routine. During my two-month preparation programme, I gathered some experience I'd like to share with everyone. When it rains, the frogs become very happy and start croaking together. Something of the same sort happens in the many coaching centres of the Dhaka city before the admission season. People says that money flies around in Dhaka, and all you have to do is reach out and catch it. I reached out, and all I got was a handful of leaflets and brochures of various coaching centres. They were all inviting me to join their IBA admission programs. All of them made the same promise of providing the best possible curriculum.

So the first thing I did was to get into one of these coaching centres (CC). My CC was a good one, having five years of experience, and was loyal to its commitments...or at least tried to be. Soon, I was in a batch, studying to get into IBA. We were required by the IBA, to undergo a two-hour written test worth 100 marks 30 for Math, 30 for English (MCQ), 20 for Analytical Ability, and 20 for English (Written). We had three teachers for teaching us English, Math, and Analytical Ability respectively.

Studying for the entrance exam was a lot of fun. There were so many different types of students from different institutions, all under one roof. During this time, I got to know a lot about the characteristics of different students. Now I am a 'student expert' who can successfully guess the institution from which a student has come. My predictions may not always be dead accurate, but they're usually right.

Here's a demo of my enchanting ability. If a girl is intellectual, smart, and overly aggressive with regards to her knowledge, chances are, she's either from Viquarunnessa Noon or Holy Cross. If a guy is smart and emulates Vivek Oberoi, taking the mock exams as if they were the real thing, and getting into competition with the Viquis, then he's either from Notre Dame or Dhaka College. If you see any diplomatic mastermind types, they're either from Ideal, Residential, or Shaheen College. If the student is meek, reserved, and slightly self-serving, then they could be from City College,Wills Little Flower, or Herman Gmeiner. Finally, if all those abovementioned qualities come together, with the addition of a swagger that suggests that the Chairperson of the IBA has personally granted him/her a seat, then most likely, the student is from an English Medium school. This species can be identified by their baggy pants, unusual hairstyles, exotic jewelry, and tops made from gamchaa material.

Enough on students, let's talk about the teachers. My CC was run by IBA students. In the management, we had this macho 'bhaiya', who protected us from the paraar polas; at the reception sat another bhaiya with the gift of gab, who used to sweet-talk candidates and guardians into joining the CC. We also had a good-looking apu who sat at the reception, but I still couldn't figure out what she did.

As for the teaching staff, the apus were very helpful and cooperative, and always just a phone call away. The bhaiyas were a bit stubborn and wilful. We had one teaching us Analytical Ability, who inspired us with his success story about getting into IBA despite being a mediocre student all his life. Yet another taught us English, and he would frequently be absent, under the pretext of being 'busy with someone in the Sangsad Bhaban'. Since he was no minister or MP, I wonder what he actually did.

Hey, I almost forgot about the exam! After two months of doing anything but studying, the big day finally arrived. I was only slightly nervous, not being too bothered about careers. My friends, however were going crazy calculating the competition ratio, which arrived at 1:70. The only thing that really bothered me was the trouble of finding the venue with the car. The rickshaw pullers rode according to their whims and fancies, knowing they were safe in the University Zone. They refused to give way before my car, making me want to hit them. I finally reached the venue, and toiled my way through the exam...and passed.

The day I went to collect my results, I was amazed to see that the CC's had already put up banners advertizing mock viva exams. Hats off to the guys for being so punctual!

The viva was a torture session that traumatized even the most brilliant students. There were problems supplied at every point, to which no one could give a concrete solution. During the mock viva, the suggestions put forward about gesture, posture, attitude, etc blew my mind. The IBA viva board is reputed to be meticulous and ruthless with their candidates. So we were molded to aim to present ourselves as a thousand times better than we actually are. Even the appropriate clothes to wear, and whether or not to wear perfume created confusion. "To apply hair gel or not to apply hair gel" that was the burning question.

After blowing hot and cold, and gathering my courage, I faced the viva. In the room I realised something; that the people weren't that bad. They treated me nicely, everything went smoothly, and I got in. Yay! Everyone started to admire my confidence, not realising that it was because I didn't have the brains to calculate the risks involved. Although I didn't get the princess or find some hidden treasure, I hope I live happily ever after.

Don’t bet on it

A fellow got up one Saturday morning with the odd feeling that something about this day was to be different. Something unusual WAS about to happen. He glanced out the window at the thermometer: 33 degrees. He went downstairs - the clock had stopped at 3 o'clock. He picked up the newspaper and read the date: the 3rd of the month.
Threes - that was it! He grabbed the paper and flipped it open to the racing section. Sure enough in the 3rd race, there was a horse named Trio! The fellow hurried to the bank, drew out his life savings and bet it all on the horse to win.
The horse finished 3rd.






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