Archive for the tag - orthorexia

Orthorexia: Healthy Eating Taken to the Extreme.

A few months ago, I went out to dinner with a very healthy and very picky friend. While I do my best to uphold a relatively healthy diet, this friend makes me look like Ronald McDonald by comparison. We met up with two of his friends – and shockingly, their diets were even more restrictive!

At one point, the waiter brought over a complementary bowl noddles. All three of the men erupted in laughter at the idea of eating noodles – as they contain refined grains and were cooked in oil. “More for me,” I thought to myself – and, to the surprise of the men, I dug in. For the record and much to their dismay, I also took home the leftovers.

Eating healthy is one thing. But like anything else, it can be taken to the extreme.

When people become obsessed with eating healthy, and avoiding foods with artificial colors, preservatives, unhealthy fat, added salt or sugar, doctors are using a new term called “orthorexia” to describe the disorder. In Greek, “orthos” means proper and “orexia” means diet.

Orthorexics are obsessed with food selection – and eating in restaurants can become impossible. It can result in isolation, the inability to take part in everyday activities and extreme intolerance of others’ food choices.

While I doubt the men at dinner were truly orthorexics, it’s easy to see how healthy eating can get out of control. Even when healthy things – like a good diet or working out – become an obsession, it’s still an obsession. And it’s important to seek out professional help.

Do you know anyone who is obsessed with healthy eating? Has it taken control of their life? Let me know in the comments below.