Anorexics take morbid care not to overeat. Those who suffer from orthorexia are forced to ask themselves the question of the quality of the food. There is disagreement about how the compulsion to eat right should be classified.
When a person spends several hours a day pondering the content of their food, some medical professionals call it a quirk, while others see it as a serious tendency towards anorexia. Still other doctors speak of an independent clinical picture; officially, however, this is not the case.
Wanting to eat right can become a compulsion
The compulsion to want to eat right and only consume suitable foods can go so far that those affected think they have to order their ingredients directly from their country of origin. New food scandals intensify the excessive dispute; and more and more foods do not meet the underlying criteria. Food that is thought to be carcinogenic or allergenic is not consumed. What is initially a vegetarian and later a vegan diet will sooner or later become a real bottleneck, as only a few foods are not on the blacklist.
Orthorexia: Affects educated, young women
In orthorexia, the idea of wanting to eat properly initially causes appetite to wane. This is followed by underweight and deficiency symptoms such as listlessness and difficulty concentrating. In addition, the compulsive focus on having to eat correctly in terms of quality disturbs social contacts. A social round with food and drink is also impossible because those affected try desperately to convince others of their ideology. Often young and educated women are affected who, as a result of a diet or a change in diet, become more and more control-mad. The main cause of orthorexia is an increased need for control that is neglected in other areas of life.