Are You Suffering from Orthorexia Nervosa?

orthorexia nervosa

Is this the face of suffering?

It had to happen.  With the massive cultural obsession with disease comes the latest one:  Orthorexia Nervosa. Apparently, this condition is chronic and can happen to anyone who walks into a health food store – at least in Great Britain…

Dreaded Disease

According to Amelia Hill, the Guardian.Co.UK social affairs correspondent writing for The Observer on August 16, 2009, “Eating disorder charities are reporting a rise in the number of people suffering from a serious psychological condition characterized by an obsession with healthy eating.

“The condition, orthorexia nervosa, affects equal numbers of men and women, but sufferers tend to be aged over 30, middle-class and well-educated.”

And there are “Symptoms”…

Orthorexia nervosa sufferers, says Hill, like to focus on “righteous” eating and have rigid rules about avoiding certain foods, the article declares. Refusing to touch sugar, salt, caffeine, alcohol, wheat, gluten, yeast, soya, corn and dairy foods is just the start of their diet restrictions. Any foods that have come into contact with pesticides, herbicides or contain artificial additives are also out.

“I am definitely seeing significantly more orthorexics than just a few years ago,” said Ursula Philpot, chair of the British Dietetic Association’s mental health group. “Other eating disorders focus on quantity of food but orthorexics can be overweight or look normal. They are solely concerned with the quality of the food they put in their bodies, refining and restricting their diets according to their personal understanding of which foods are truly ‘pure’.”

Some Solutions

Apparently, focusing on healthy living is a disorder.  Hey!  I think we Orthorexics should go all out and demand minority status!! Just think:  federally-mandated regulations that state that ortherixics – in order to lessen their suffering – must have stores designed, built and stocked specifically for them.   And that counselors must be available  24/7 to advise us on how to eat junk food.  Maybe it could be added to ObamaCare if worded properly . . .

Uh Oh . . . call the hotline.  I feel an urge coming on to go grab some insecticide-free prunes.

Categories : Health Issues

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