When one is seemingly obsessed with drugs and alcohol, out come the labels ‘addiction’, ‘substance abuse’ and so on and so forth but when an unrecognized illness that is known as orthorexia, when one is far too obsessed to eat only healthy foods to the point when one slips up, the person overcompensates by taking an extreme form of action such as fasting and so on and so forth.
If one adopts a sense of realism here, the boundaries have obviously been crossed and it only goes to show how preachy some people can get with this whole health & fitness thing even though they barely know nothing about either!
Strangely enough, what this points to, is the lack of balance. Even though this illness is not recognized, it only goes to show that any obsessive-compulsive behavior is not ‘healthy’ even if you can think of nothing else but taking care of your health.
The bottom line being that one must leave the whole business of maintaining a healthy diet to the professionals, while cutting yourself some slack at least once in while… Life’s too short to be so prude! And it gets boring too…
The 80 10 10 Diet (Dr. Graham’s Diet)
Speaking of professionals and diets, an interesting diet known as the 80 10 10 diet that consists of a low fat raw vegan diet that has been conceptualized by Douglas N. Graham who has been an athlete all his life ever since he turned into a vegan since 1978.
While being a dietary adviser to both Martina Navratilova and Demi Moore, it should be obvious that this way of living is rather stringent even before we get into the rudiments of the diet itself.
And right off the bat, he believes that the ideal nutrition that one must take is 80 % carbohydrates, 10 % protein and 10 % fat while using fruit as the foundation of the diet since other low-fat vegan diets that consist of rice, potatoes and bread to which salt, sugar and other preservatives are added since they taste bland, which in turn reduces the nutritional value of these foods.
The bottom-line of the diet is that it consists of raw (read: uncooked) food, and nothing else which means that fruits and leafy vegetables are a large part of the diet. In particular, he suggests that when one is on this diet, they must eat large quantities of one particular fruit. Apart from fruits and vegetables, he encourages people to eat raw nuts, seeds and coconuts as well. So, no animal foods or even processed stuff, obviously!
Of course, being an athlete himself, it wouldn’t be surprising that he also addresses other factors that determine health such as sunlight, adequate sleep, emotional balance and most of all, exercise.
While several athletes have noticed an improvement in their performance, it is a restrictive diet, and one that can be tough to maintain when at social occasions. Nutritional deficiency might occur if one does not take enough leafy green vegetables, while it is important that one uses B12 supplements along with the diet.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor will you have a perfect body in no time either! However, it’s not hard to understand why orthorexia can turn into something of an obsession when it comes to maintaining a diet for these folks who want to get fit superfast, but hey… live a little (and get a life!)… will you?