Now a days everybody seems to be very health focussed. Like me, many rely on nutritional information found in the media or magazines. All we want is a perfect body and perfect health. Do you notice how obsessed we are with these healthy diets?
It usually starts with good intention but an increasing obsession with healthy eating could lead to an eating disorder. In extreme cases they exhibit an obsessive preoccupation with avoiding foods that they may think unhealthy and limit themselves to a diet they consider pure. It’s an “unhealthy obsession” with otherwise healthy eating and may lead to serious psychological and physical problems.
Dr. Steven Bratman in 1997 coined the term ‘Orthorexia’ to describe his own approach to food and patterns of eating. He used this term in parallel to other eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia. In 2001 he published a book ‘Health Food Junkies’.
Dr. Bratman, who recovered from orthorexia, states “I pursued wellness through healthy eating for years, but gradually I began to sense that something was going wrong. The poetry of my life was disappearing. My ability to carry on normal conversations was hindered by intrusive thoughts of food. The need to obtain meals free of meat, fat, and artificial chemicals had put nearly all social forms of eating beyond my reach. I was lonely and obsessed. … I found it terribly difficult to free myself. I had been seduced by righteous eating. The problem of my life’s meaning had been transferred inexorably to food, and I could not reclaim it.” (Source: www.orthorexia.com)
MSNBC “Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski struggled with food and body image for thirty years. Author of “Obsessed: America’s Food Addiction—and My Own,” she spoke at George Washington University about her brain being obsessed on food for most of her life.
She said it was a dangerous cycle that was “extreme and lonely, and so unhealthy”. These habits began as a 15 year old and became entrenched in her adulthood. As a television journalist, she tried to live up to the “beauty queen” image her industry promoted.
If you experience a lot of anxiety around food, suffers a drastic weight loss as a result of poor nutrition or spends hours worrying about the next meal then you really need help.
For help please visit an eating disorder specialist.