It's so weird how we here at TMR know this stuff, instinctively, while the rest - consummately cultish "followers" all - will defend doing the wrong thing, just because it's popular, until the day they die:
We all know the type. They never let wheat, yeast or dairy pass their lips. They’ve cut out alcohol and caffeine. They’re obsessed with healthy eating — yet every day, they look more unwell and unhappier.Not only that, but they force it on others (Yes, we're talking to you, Michelle Obama and NY Mayor Mike Bloomberg) and they're arrogant about it - a character flaw they never view as a problem - as they're defending whatever insane regime they've gotten themselves into without investigating it thoroughly. Investigating anything thoroughly means looking at both it's positives and negatives, something these "followers' have no interest in, as they go about demanding others do as they say.
These are the symptoms of a condition called ‘orthorexia’ by dieticians. It is, apparently, on the increase — particularly in professional women in their 30s.
Orthorexia was coined in 1997 by Californian doctor Steven Bratman in his book Health Food Junkies, and means ‘correct appetite’ (from the Greek orthos for right and orexis for appetite). It is a fixation with eating ‘pure’ food that, far from doing you good, can become so extreme that it leads to malnutrition, chronic ill health and depression.
Plenty of celebrities are secret long-term orthorexics, passing off their limited diet of sashimi or steamed broccoli as ‘getting in shape for a part’.
But they’re not the only ones. Many of us have fallen into the same trap, believing that the more ‘bad’ foods we cut out, the healthier we’ll be. But it’s the start of a slippery slope.
And it doesn’t just stop at food — orthorexics are often gym bunnies, who’ll work out for two hours and then go for a ten-mile run.
The grim truth is that this level of health obsession is a potentially dangerous form of self-control. And it’s increasingly prevalent.
So what's the answer to orthorexia? For that you'll have to consult a psychiatrist (a suggestion we'd offer for a lot of the topics we cover - sorry, Scientologists) but we can tell you what the short-term solution is, especially when you're around us:
Shut the fuck up and eat.