Orthorexia, when eating healthy becomes an obsession

What doubt is there that the feeding Is it a very important issue in the life of every person? Caring for what is served at the table is essential for all members of the household. However, as in every aspect of life, you have to know how to maintain a balance. Eating healthy should never become an obsession because as all excess is bad.

And healthy food is no exception. This situation is known as orthorexia nervosa and it refers to an obsession with the consumption of foods healthy Something that ironically far from helping people, ends up reporting negative effects and that actually responds to a need to look good in front of the mirror, especially in adolescents.


Diet without consultation

Usually orthorexia patients do not follow any guidelines recommended by a professional to make by menu. It is advisable to go to the nutritionist to recommend a personalized and balanced diet, which is adapted to the conditions of the individual. What is worth for a person, is usually not recommended for the rest. A maxim that these people do not follow.

Orthorexic people turn to foods that qualify as healthy from the outside. In this sense, the expansion of the internet has had a lot to do. Surfing the web means facing a lot of content that ends up confuse to the person, especially the adolescents, who are socially pressured to look good.


Orthorexia usually begins as an attempt to eat healthier, but over time the individual focuses more on quality and purity of the product. These people become more and more obsessive about what they consume and the measures, and how to cope with the slip-ups. At this point their self-esteem becomes dependent on the purity of their diet and they often feel superior to others, especially in regards to food intake.

Symptoms of orthorexia

People with orthorexia are concerned at all times for the food they eat. Almost every hour of the day its only thought It is the research, planning and preparation of meals. One of the clearest symptoms is the follow-up of strict rules when eating, such as completely eliminating certain products such as refined sugar or hydrogenated oil. If they move away from self-imposed norms, a feeling of guilt will appear.


Unlike others Eating Disorders, people with orthorexia are very open about their feeding rules. They share these rules with the rest and are not afraid to tell others. In that sense another symptom is the contempt for others who do not follow these "healthy" tips. This mentality ends up isolating them socially and the loss of friends. A situation that worsens their situation as the rejection ends up increasing the hardness of their plan in the search for a better appearance.

Diagnosis and treatment

Orthorexia is a difficult treatment to treat. The line that separates the search for a better diet from obsession with what one eats is very thin. These are some questions what parents can do to know if their children are going through this situation:

- Do you care more about the virtue of what you eat than the pleasure of doing it?

- Do you spend more than three hours a day thinking about healthy food?

- Do you feel superior to other people who do not eat as per their rules?

- Does the quality of life decrease as the quality of your diet has increased?

- Do you feel guilty if you skip your regimen?

In this sense, the best treatment is come first a psychologist to find out what motivates this obsession with food standards in young people and solve this problem. Once treated this point, it must be a nutritionist who proposes a balanced menu that takes into account the characteristics of the adolescent.

Doing it on the contrary can be dangerous since unsolved The problem that motivates the obsession, will make the introduction of new rules, those of the nutritionist, stress more to the young. More rules suppose more preoccupation to follow them at the foot of the letter and therefore, an aggravating one of the situation.

Damián Montero

Video: Elimination dieting may be symptom of orthorexia (WVIZ)


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