Ever Heard of 'Drunkorexia'? 4 Diet Fad Behaviors That May Actually Be Eating Disorders
What it is: Drunkorexia refers to the behaviors of restricting food intake in preparation for a night of drinking, Brennan says. “Alcohol has a large amount of calories and this behavior can develop in order to prevent weight gain from alcohol. Many college students begin this out of fear of “the freshman 15.”
Why it’s Unhealthy: Drinking on an empty stomach or when you’re dehydrated quickens intoxication and can lead to alcohol poisoning, black outs, fainting, vomiting, etc. According to Brennan, if done repeatedly, there can be effects on the gastrointestinal track.
Signs You May Be Suffering: “Look for a repeated pattern of food restriction followed by drinking,” she says. In addition, purposely skipping meals, drinking before eating and eating very little after a night out may also be signs.
What it is: Orthorexia, a term coined in the late 90s by Steven Bratman, MD, literally refers to “correct appetite.” People who struggle with orthorexia have a belief that certain foods are better or healthier than others and seek to achieve health and well-being through following a prescribed pattern of “healthy” eating.
ESSENCE.com talked with Bonnie Brennan, Senior Clinical Director of Adult Residential and Partial Hospital Services, Eating Recovery Center, to get the lowdown on these disorders, how to spot them and how to deal.