Happy Friday fit babes, lets get to the good shit shall we? Today’s post is focused on the topic of fear foods. What are these? Glad you asked;
Eating disorder patients often have a conviction and morbid fear that types or amounts of food will lead to instant and discernable weight gain. These may include any high-calorie items or groups of food such as fats, “junk food”, or meat.
It’s time to get personal here so bare with me; I have had so many fear and trigger foods over the years I don’t even know where to start with my list. Anywhere from certain brands of bread (because the carb amount is 2 grams more than the one I usually eat) to eating a scoop of regular full sugar full fat ice cream. These things USE to scare the shit out of me.
Now hear me out, I have nothing against “clean eaters” I believe there is many great benefits to trying to eat nutrient rich foods consistently, hell that IS what I do most of the time is it not? The only issue I have with clean eating itself is where you are extremely restricted and create these fears of food such as ice cream and bread.
Back in my beginner days of meal prep and sticking to the plan I was extremely dedicated to what I was doing, and making sure I lose two pounds at least every week. This also lead me to believe that if I were to even breathe around my “fear foods” I would be set off track and set myself on a course for disappointment, guilt, and my worst fear of all at the time; gaining weight and not losing weight.
I was given a “cheat day” every week (Sundays) and even though I was granted this opportunity to go wild and have whatever I wanted, I still cringed at the fact of touching something that was in my mind “dirty” food. It made me feel like I was even further prolonging the results I so badly wanted. Little did I realize hitting my goal weight was not at all ideal for a healthy version of me.
Here’s where things get a little bit more complicated. Most people who have these types of habitual fears of food or specific types of foods 9/10 times don’t even realize that they actually have a type of disordered eating habit. There isn’t just anorexia and bulimia nervosa anymore, there are much finer detailed disorders that people have no idea are unhealthy (although they think their clean eating is healthy) kind of get the jist of what I’m saying?
With benefits of “clean eating” this can also sometimes come paired with the bad habits of creating food fears and anxieties. In term damaging yourself not only mentally but also physically depending on the severity of a specific case. That is probably the simplest form I can describe this in.
These habits can not only affect your own personal health but can also affect relationships, productivity, social and work environments. (see below)
Dr. Sherry Pagoto, Clinical Psychologist:
“If a behavior is so disruptive that it interferes with work and personal relationships, it could be a sign of a psychological disorder. Social life is a huge factor in health because it’s a buffer for stress. Lack of social support can mean less ability to cope with stress.
People with OCD have a lot of anxiety, and perform rituals or compulsions to relieve that anxiety. [In the case of someone with orthorexia], they may have some underlying anxiety issues that are triggered by an interest in health or by all the conflicting news concerning nutrition. Maybe there’s an underlying fear of death or disease. Whether it is actually a disorder I think depends on the individual’s personality traits; they may just be a perfectionist.”
So what does one do? Intuitive eating and or macro counting can help ease your way out of obsessive compulsive habits such as fearing foods. This doesn’t just happen overnight, and you can’t expect that of yourself. It’s a step by step process that takes time and patience.
What’s the best part? breaking free of the chains of orthorexia. Finally being able to pick up something and eat it without question may seem easy to a lot of people. But with those who have struggled with disordered eating this can be one of the most challenging things that they face.
I still to this day struggle with certain foods, I have good days and bad days, but I am proud to say I am far from where I was five years ago. I still catch myself obsessing over nutritional information but that’s a work in progress, and as it is said “progress is better than no progress”.
Happy Friday fit babes, have a donut for me – would ya?