Orthorexia Nervosa: What is It?

What is orthorexia nervosa? Well you may have heard of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, which are also eating disorders. These all have to do with when a person eats a certain way, most likely due to reasons that are related to weight. What is this new term though?


Orthorexia nervosa is an obsession with eating healthy. Incredibly enough, orthorexia nervosa, according to Sarah Kaplan at Independent.co.uk, actually was trending on the social media platform of Facebook within 24 hours after its arrival. Examples are probably how one would get anxious, as was said by one commenter, around starchy foods such as rice or potatoes and that then this person felt there was a problem. Others as you can imagine, were on the other side of the spectrum, recognizing no problem with simply eating healthy.


Although psychiatry has not yet recognized orthorexia as a disorder, it is certainly being recognized as an issue to ample people. People that admit to having such a problem would probably characterize it as obsessive. Honestly, I never post pictures of food on social media because I think it is absurd and, to be completely honest, I also think it is profusely done, so I avoid it. As it has become such a phenomenon already, it has attracted substantial amounts of attention in the media.


What this prompts me to think about is how I have discussed in many classes before how the media influences people to engage in certain eating behaviors like anorexia and bulimia. Now that orthorexia has grown in its vitality to people and their desire to have that body they always wanted, how will this all be reflected in advertising and media?


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