I just wanted to start my post off today thanking Katie A.K.A. Chocolate Covered Katie for a very good read this morning. Her post on “Orthorexia Nervosa: the new eating disorder” was a real eye opener.
“Orthorexia Nervosa is characterized by an excessive focus on eating healthy foods. Basically, its sufferers start out with a simple desire to live a healthy lifestyle. But they become so preoccupied with eating healthily that it becomes an unhealthy obsession.”
It basically is stating that you can alienate yourself from the rest of society, friends, and family by eating in a way that you only deem as appropriate. Your desire to eat “right” can subsequently lead to malnourishment if you are actually limiting your diet to only certain nutrients. It can become a problem if you are spending an insane amount of time planning, and re-planning your meals to be balanced in a particular way. Not letting anyone else prepare your food, for example, dining out would be extremely difficult in this situation.
It’s not to say that all healthy eaters, vegan’s, or vegetarians have a disease that makes them eat the way they do. No, no, it is stating that you can become consumed with the food and meals you eat to the point where it could harm you emotionally, and or physically.
I choose to eat healthy as often as my diet will allow me. Lucky for me, that is pretty much every time I eat. I am neither vegan or vegetarian. I have to think outside the box sometimes when groceries run low, or when I do dine out, but I belive we should all practice a little more health conscious eating whenever possible.
I have been guilty of spending too much time planning my meals for the next day, or hunting down menus to restaurants I know I’ll be visiting. Is it annoying to the people I work and live around? I hope not, but they have probably all looked at me crazy from time to time. For example when eating a salad there was not a healthy alternative to a salad dressing to be found, I let the salad go naked and enjoyed the crunch of the vegetables by themselves. I got a couple of raised eyebrows on that one. I am slightly aware of the perception I give off that I am a bit of a food snob. “Oh she won’t eat that” or “That’s not in your diet, huh?” is a few of the comments I get. It’s not the normal fast paced American fast food diet that we are all used to. Do I feel bad? No. I am proud of how I eat. If you are happy in your choice of eating style then you should continue what you do as long as it doesn’t hurt you or anyone else along the way.
Like Chocolate Covered Katie said in her post:
“Eat what your body truly craves, exercise (but not excessively), feed your soul, and–above all–try to stress as little as possible.”
Another words…eat stress free people…and by all means do it with your health in mind!