Orthorexia Nervosa (more commonly known as Orthorexia) is, very simply put, an eating disorder. Unlike other eating disorders that are more regularly discussed such as Anorexia or Bulimia, this eating disorder focuses on consuming healthy foods to the point of cutting certain food groups or ingredients completely out of your diet. The main characteristic that all these eating disorders have in common is undoubtedly the foundation of the unhealthy obsession: control.
Orthorexia begins similarly as other eating disorders do. First, the individual wants to take control of the food he/she is consuming. Initially, it can begin as simply a heightened awareness of what items they are ingesting. They will then begin to cut out certain foods that they feel are detrimental to their health. Eventually, as the intensity of the restriction and control increases, the number of foods they don’t allow themselves to eat becomes extreme and thinking about what they eat becomes all consuming. They will begin to reject a wider and wider range of foods based on health principles and as a result, their diet becomes restrictive and they often suffer weight loss.
If you or someone you know is suffering from Orthorexia, intervention is required by a doctor or nutritionist, as well as a mental health expert such as Dr. Kelly Mothner. People who experience Orthorexia have an overwhelming sense of the need to control something in their lives. This is symptomatic of an underlying mental health issue that needs to be identified and addressed. In order to overcome Orthorexia, you must begin by healing the mind through counseling and the body’s healing will soon follow thereafter.
For treatment and additional information concerning Orthorexia, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Kelly Mothner. Dr. Mothner is experienced in various forms of counseling including Family Therapy, Couples Therapy, and Adolescent Therapy. Call 310.892.2572 to begin healing today!