O R T H O R E X I A. Sounds like anorexia, but it's actually a completely different disorder. The overlap is remarkable, for sure, but the most significant difference is that despite an orthorexic's obsession and compulsivity surrounding only eating certain foods, perhaps at certain times and wishing to abstain from all unhealthy items (or foodstuff they believe to be bad for them specifically) ...they do not necessarily wish to lose weight. On the contrary, a lot of individuals suffering orthorexia are in the health sector, in the fitness industry, politics, celebrity culture and even in the education system.
So let's cut to the chase: orthorexia affects around 57% of the UK population, whilst anorexia affects 2.3%. That's enormous. The debilitating nature of only eating certain things, or having fears of specific foods and drinks debilitates the individual mentally and physically. It can lead to social withdrawal, development or exacerbation of existing mental conditions like anxiety and OCD, or can actually spiral into anorexia itself.
Let's learn the basics together:
What is it? Who does it affect? How is it different to anorexia? And why being too healthy IS a thing.