Orthorexia; When ‘Healthy’ Becomes an Unhealthy Obsession.




What are the odds that the more you struggle to maintain a healthy diet, the more harm you do to your body? Apparently, trying too hard to keep a healthy diet will sooner or later make you a victim of an eating disorder known as ‘Orthorexia.’

What Is Orthorexia?

It’s simply an unhealthy obsession with healthy eating.

Orthorexia has turned out to be the newest eating disorder in town with everyone wanting to maintain a perfect diet. However, Nobody knows when they fall victims until too late when it gets the best of them.

Orthorexic people are those living in fear of imperfect eating, or those who are so obsessed with following a perfect diet, to an extent of developing an emotional dependency. It is mostly associated with people who are trying to lose weight.


Who is a Victim of Orthorexia?

A large percentage of those concerned with their diet and lifestyle have become orthorexic once or twice in their lifetime.

Orthorexic people are always worried about the amount of sugar, fats or calories in every meal they take. They always want to maintain a perfect diet and they rarely indulge.

victims of orthorexia fear indulging

Victims of Orthorexia fear indulging.

Even when they are out on a weekend with friends or attending a party, they would still want to stick to their lemon water (if they are on weight loss), boiled rice and vegetables while people are enjoying all sorts of wines and nyama choma (roast beef).

Emotional Dependency     

Emotional dependency occurs when your diet regimen starts influencing the way you feel about yourself, your self-esteem, and peace of mind. You notice this when you are so obsessed with your diet such that when you don’t comply even a single day, your self-worth goes drastically down and you are left into the open arms of guilt and anxiety.

You even try to deprive yourself more food in order to ‘recover’ from the fatty foods you took yesterday at your friend’s birthday party.


guit and anxiety from orthorexia

Guilt and Anxiety due to orthorexia.

If you fall victim, you will notice that orthorexia affects you both emotionally and socially.(Socially because your obsession ruins your relationship with your peers and family members, and emotionally because you become subject to mood swings and even guilt)

Such kind of fear and anxiety really goes a long way in ruining your self-image


How About A Little Motivation?

By now you know that a deprived body is a demotivated body (soon wearing out) that cannot perform as expected. Even when you are on a weight-loss diet, learn to give your body some motivation by indulging once in a while.

Go out on a weekend with friends or family and grab that vanilla ice-cream you’ve been craving. Grab the pizza, the McDonalds’, the hot dogs, the roast chicken, and everything else you crave. Just unwind and enjoy it all!

Now, after all that weekend indulgence, your body is set free. Get back on your weekly diet and workout routine and you’ll be surprised just how well your body responds.

There’s nothing as overwhelming as an unsatisfied craving.   

RECOMMENDED: The 4-ingredient infection-proof Cocktail..


The 80:20 Rule

It is now clear that part of healthy eating is being ok with an imperfect diet at times. Try balancing your diet using the 80:20 rule. (80% perfect diet and 20% imperfect diet)

Fight orthorexia with the 80:20 rule

Fight orthorexia with the 80:20 rule

The 80:20 rule is a diet routine that’s;

  • Flexible and realistic.
  • Sustainable.
  • Not overwhelming.

Apart from giving your body an ample time to adapt to different environments, it gives room for occasional indulgence hence, you never have to push your body too much.

RELATED: 8 Calorie-dense Food to get you started on Gaining Weight…


Take Home;

  • When it comes to healthy eating, balance is key.
  • There is no fixed balance for everyone.
  • Each and every individual should find their own balance that works for them and stick to it; balance between foods that make you feel good and those that do not.

                             I hope you find your own healthy balance and avoid falling a victim of the orthorexia disorder.


READ ALSO: Food Seduction and how to break it..


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