I am as guilty as anybody, but I marvel at our ability as a modern society to slap a label on anything that is not 9 to 5 -everyone does it like this- normal. And of course if it is not the way most people do it, it is of course a disorder. Disorder means disorganized right? Who gets to decide how you organize certain aspects of your life? I came across a post by someone who mentioned the term disordered eating. I am not going to claim that I don’t understand what that means. It probably means Doritos and ice cream for breakfast, and you keep on going from there. The other end of the spectrum is this other term that really upsets me: Orthorexia, which apparently means to be overly concerned with healthy eating. Yeah, that sounds really bad. They opened a Fairway supermarket near where I live recently. I stopped by on Saturday and it was a nut house. Sort of like the lines to see Harry Potter next week. Yes, we- all of us have to deal with a super abundance of food, a super abundance of free time (yes we do. We did not have to grow/preserve it for the winter) and we have to decide for ourselves how to organize and manage that abundance. It may not be easy but let’s not call it a disease or a problem. Not having enough to create “a disorder” that’s a problem.  We can figure out how to best feed ourselves without a universal consensus of what is virtuous and perfect and balanced. The best part about being a grown up is that you get to choose your own food, remember?

Now let’s see if I can spend the rest of the afternoon in a salt bath. My shoulder blades are very upset with yesterday’s led practice.

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7 Responses to Disorder

  1. Liz says:

    Hi! I enjoy your blog… just haven’t ever commented before…
    I liked this post because it’s a good rant! I had no idea one could be overly concerned with healthy eating. Sounds like a disorder that the whole nation might look into trying to adopt.

    Great job on your weight loss, by the way- you’re looking very strong and healthy.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Some information about Orthorexia. I realise that your point about knowing who came up with it is not quite a literal one, but here it is anyway.


    I don’t think that pigeon holing people and calling such things disorders is always helpful, but to my mind, the attempts to ‘medicalise’ the ‘condition’ are not 100% negative, because that’s the only way that sufferers will get the help they need. The diagnostic manual holds a lot of power.

    Orthorexia is a form of restrictive eating disorder that can lead to death. Sufferers are clearly not eating healthily, but at some level they believe they are, and become scared to eat certain foods as they believe they are bad for them. For instance, not eating any protein at all because they can’t find their ‘safe’ protein, and believe it to be healthier to go without altogether. Eating no vegetables because they can’t find organic vegetables. Removing fruit from their diet because it contains sugar. Arguably it’s a form of anorexia, which is often associated with having ‘safe’ foods. Ultimately, the popular view is that both conditions are about having ( a semblance of) control.

    • fivefootwo says:

      Thanks for the link. I will check it out. Without having read it yet, I have to agree that it is a form of Anorexia. I have always wondered why most of us ritualize or/and perform certain “control ceremonies” in our lives, and some cross the line to obsession (Anorexia/OCD). Someone once told me that any addictive behavior is performed when the individual cannot cope with a feeling he/she perceives as inappropriate or shameful. I’d say it’s an unwillingness to question thoughts that cause anxiety. Like they say, It’s never about the food. Thank you so much for commenting.

  3. Liz says:

    Anon- not meaning to be disrespectful- I think we were kind of joking about it thinking in terms of real, honest to goodness, healthy eating. When anything is out of balance that far, it’s not healthy.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Ack, sorry. I do come across as pretty po faced, don’t I?!

    It was just one conversation I couldn’t resist butting in on.

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