‘Clean’ food obsession develops into new eating disorder

23 Jul

By Freya Ensbey, Bond University Journalism Student

The popular rise of eating ‘clean’ or organic foods on the Gold Coast has brought with it a new eating disorder known as orthorexia.

It is a condition in which people become obsessed with the food they eat and it can have a negative impact on their mental health.

Gold Coast nutritionist Kellie Hogan from Eat Smart Nutrition said that orthorexia is generally started with the intention of wanting to be healthier, but it’s taken to an extreme.

“ A lot of orthorexia sufferers have no intention to lose weight or control their portion sizes, they are fixated on the nutritional content of their food and avoiding unhealthy foods at all costs”, she said.

“Most sufferers become so obsessed with eating everything that is healthy that they become fixated on it.

“Some even are so concerned with others preparing their own food that they will stop eating out or socializing.”

Those who have an unhealthy obsession with otherwise healthy eating may be suffering from Orthorexia Nervosa, a term which literally means fixation on righteous eating.

Clean eating advocate and author of popular blog Funeral for My Fat, Sharee, said that people are now taking responsibility for what is put in their mouths instead of eating anything they can.

“There are so many more people making considered choices at the supermarket,” she said.

“The research has been done to prove the health benefits of eating clean and organic foods and avoiding unhealthy fats and sugars altogether.”

“I would definitely say I have an obsession with eating a certain way simply because I care about my health and my future and know when eating this way I feel at my optimum performance.”

Kellie Hogan suggests that as with almost everything, moderation is the key when it comes to healthy eating.

“It is a great thing for your health to eat mostly organic and healthy foods however it becomes a problem when we forget how to read signs of hunger and cravings our body is instinctively giving us,” she said.

“If you feel anxious and guilty around unhealthy foods and constantly afraid of slipping up in your day to day eating than you may be at risk of developing a gripping condition.”



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