Saturday, March 27, 2010

Orthorexia--The Dark Side of Healthy Eating, Part II

Orthorexia.  I absolutely think that I qualify as having a mild case of it. Actually, it makes me laugh, because I would rather have a mild case of "orthorexia" than be my former overweight and out of shape self.

I don't really know how to do things half-way. When I am drawn to something, I want to be the best that I can be at it. I'm not a true "perfectionist" because I don't beat myself or others up if things don't go the way I would like them to. I accept things as they are too easily and move on.  But, reading the Wikipedia article about Orthorexia  did point out to me some really important points:

#1 I don't want to exclude myself from social situations because of food. That does become an issue for me at times. For example, on Sunday night I was at a Cavs game with my husband, his brother and his brother's wife.  They asked us to go out for dinner after the game and I didn't want to go. Simply because I didn't want to eat, I didn't want to be tempted. Reading the stuff on orthorexia totally pointed out the me that taking this healthy food thing to that extreme is not a healthy place to go. The better part of me did chose to go with them and I shared a burger and had a huge salad.   I can definately see that every week will have multiple "indulgences" and that I can maintain this weight. Going to restaurants with friends and family is an extremely important part of life and one that I do not want to miss (because from what I know, we only get one shot at this!).

#2 I do not want to sound preachy about healthy food. I am sure that I have come off that way over the past 6 months to certain people in my efforts to try to help them. I am going to resolve right now not to be intrusive. If people are curious, they can read this blog, it's what it's here for.

I'm really glad that the concept of orthorexia was pointed out to me at this stage (thanks Mom!). I really think I could have continued to go down a negative path with this. I tend towards obsessive compulsiveness (something I have attributed much of my success to) and I definately know how to turn it off when I think that I need to.
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