The talk around the health conscious table has recently highlighted a new eating disorder termed othorexia nervosa. Primarily affecting adults, it is characterized by an unhealthy obsession with only eating ‘healthy’ and ‘pure’ foods. It really doesn’t sound all that awful to me, especially in a world where more than one-third of U.S. adults (34.9%) are obese.
However benign it may sound, it is apparently part and parcel of the same eating disorder spectrum as anorexia nervosa, where an extreme approach to your body may lead to real health consequences. These consequences have been clearly defined by Elsa Jones, a nutritionist and contributor to The Independent newspaper. She outlines in a recent article how eliminating food groups, obsessing over purity, over-loading on vitamins and over-exercising may lead to adverse health outcomes such as osteoporosis and heart disease as well as deficiencies that can affect the brain, skin, and joints. She certainly got my attention.
But how much thought about diet and exercise qualifies as “excessive”? If you think that you may have slipped into an unhealthy approach to diet and lifestyle, don’t be afraid to seek professional advice. If you are unsure if you have an unhealthy outlook or regimen, there are now many online assessments that can help qualify the condition for you.
One thing the professionals all have in common is that it really is all about balance in life, from career and family to diet and nutrition. I think the most important take home message from this latest news on how we (especially women) may obsess over our weight and fitness, is that our mom’s were right; everything in moderation.
Please go to the following for more information on:
Elsa Jone’s article
Eating Disorder Assessment