Orthorexia Nervosa Among Today’s Youth: A Preliminary Report Based on Psychiatrists’ Perspective
Keywords:Orthorexia Nervosa, eating disorder, mental health, psychiatrists, qualitative, thematic
AbstractOrthorexia nervosa is a new syndrome, especially among the youth and young adults, that has seen a marked increase in research over the past decade. Very high prevalence estimates in non-clinical populations of the world have fueled the discussion as to whether it is a psychological disorder in its own sense, or only a problem when occurring in reference to another mental health or eating disorder. Influences from social media and eminent role models, obsessive-compulsive tendencies, chronic anxiety, extreme regards to moralistic principles, etc. can all contribute towards development of imbalances in eating patterns. But the identification of each, their significance and degree of impact is still under evaluation by many researchers. Therefore, perspectives on appropriate insight, knowledge and understanding of orthorexia remains an unexplored area, especially in Indian context. The present study focuses primarily on highlighting such parameters through expert opinions and perspectives of practicing psychiatrists. It tries to bridge the gap by understanding psychiatrists’ perspectives regarding knowledge and prevalence of orthorexia among today’s youth. Qualitative interview approach was adopted for data collection purpose, after which in-depth research was conducted following thematic analysis of data and report generation. This work observed a gap in areas of awareness, possible impact, adequate resource accessibility on part of the consumer while indulging in obsessive healthy eating. This report has made few suggestions and recommendations in spheres of further researches, support and development of coping resources on orthorexia that can prevent from developing it into a pathologic behaviour among today’s youth in India.
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