Oh yahoo home page, how I love thee. This little excerpt is taken from the following article:
"What is orthorexia? Identified in 1997 by Colorado physician Steven Bratman, MD, orthorexica is Latin for “correct eating.” Here, too, the focus isn’t on losing weight. Instead, sufferers increasingly restrict their diets to foods they consider pure, natural and healthful. Some researchers say that orthorexia may combine a touch of obsessive compulsive disorder with anxiety and warn that severely limited “healthy” diets may be a stepping stone to anorexia nervosa, the most severe - and potentially life-threatening - eating disorder.
Orthorexics: Those affected may start by eliminating processed foods, anything with artificial colorings or flavorings as well as foods that have come into contact with pesticides. Beyond that, orthorexics may also shun caffeine, alcohol, sugar, salt, wheat and dairy foods. Some limit themselves to raw foods."
So I am going to address this one because I can just see it coming up at my next social engagement.
My first impression as a psychology major- yep. Makes sense. I can see how any eating style that restricts food in any way shape or form- from Weight Watchers to Raw Food- could turn into a compulsion, especially for a person has a predisposition to anxiety disorders, especially OCD. Could a person who is a raw foodist have an eating disorder? Absolutely. But making raw foodists the poster children for Orthorexia is unfair.
People who are trying to achieve ultimate health by cutting out processed foods, caffeine, alcohol, sugar, wheat, salt, and dairy food should not be treated as anorexic freaks. Doing this doesn't seem like an eating disorder to me. It seems like common fucking sense.
Sugar- bullshit. Empty calories, no nutritional value. Garbage.
Same goes for caffeine. There are anxiety disorders that are directly attributed to caffeine consumption. It stresses the adrenal glands. It is has no nutritional value.
Alcohol. Any substance that can cause someone severe life distress and send them to rehab??? Yep, I can see giving that up. Any health benefits reaped from alcohol can be found from other sources- like concord grape juice.
Wheat- a known allergen. Speaking from someone who is wheat/gluten intolerant, I sure am better off without it- as are many other people, especially those with Celiac Disease. It works for many people in their diet, but it doesn't seem unreasonable to cut it out.
Dairy- same scenario. It is also mucous forming. Many people are allergic or intolerant. Again, not something unreasonable to cut out of your diet.
I'm not saying these foods are evil and everyone should give them up. God knows I can slam down some vodka with the best of 'em and I truly believe that there is no "one size fits all" nutritional plan. But the point that I am trying to make is that it is perfectly reasonable to not want these foods in your diet. I wouldn't label anyone who cut these foods out of their diet with an eating disorder and I wish the media would be a little bit more responsible with their words.