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What is Orthorexia nervosa?

Orthorexia Nervosa is a term coined by Steven Bratman, MD, MPH, a physician to indicate a fixation on righteous eating. This is basically healthy eating taken too far and possibly to risky extremes. People with orthorexia reject a variety of foods that they deem to not match their health standard.

It can lead to malnutrition due to deficiencies in some macro- or micro- nutrients from the diet. It can also impact their daily lives and interaction with others from a desire to control what they eat They may shun going out with friends, or even having friends who don't quite eat the same foods that they consider healthy. It can also manifest in other ways like spending a unhealthy amount of time on food research, and being overly critical of friends and family's food choices. This can lead to a isolated, unfulfilling life and lead to other mental and physical issues.

In the ABCD Method, we explain the merits of healthy eating through the lens of macro and micro nutrients in the right proportions and we discuss the importance of creating a diet plan that's balanced and incorporates all the major food groups. It's also important that it fits your lifestyle and that there is room for deviations.

The goal is to develop a body that's resilient. Life can get in the way but it should not be paralyzing or take us completely off course. This highlights the fact that we need to develop a mindset that helps us to bounce back from setbacks. Obsessive dieting is not the answer and we need to avoid going to extremes for good health. The pursuit of good health should be a joyous endeavor full of rewards.

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