Is ‘Clean Eating’ Dangerous?

I came across an article via Global News titled “‘Clean Eating’ Trend Has Eating Disorder Specialists Concerned.” The article by Leslie Young offers a lot of insightful information regarding the potential dangers affiliated with clean eating, therefore I wanted to discuss it here on my blog.

Clean eating, by definition, involves consuming minimally processed foods and a vast amount of fresh vegetables and unrefined grains. In a broad perspective, this trend sounds healthy and arguably does not sound as though it can be dangerous. Eating disorder specialists, however, are concerned that the trend may be taken too far, resulting in the development of eating disorders amongst individuals who practice clean eating.

The article references different specialists, their main concern being that clean eating involves a lot of restriction in terms of what can and cannot be consumed whilst practicing the diet. Food restriction, when practices irresponsibly, can lead to extreme dieting and possible the development of an eating disorder.

Personally, I would not go so far as to title clean eating as dangerous. Clean eating can certainly become dangerous, however, if the diet becomes too strict or restrictive, convincing an individual that depriving their body of essential nutrients is an effective way to adhere to the diet.

Eating, in general, is technically dangerous when examining it from a perspective that considers the possibility of restriction of occurring. Regardless if a person is abiding by a clean eating diet or not, eating disorder behaviors and tendencies can develop without any apparent reasoning. Granted, practicing a diet that involves food or calorie restriction in the first place can increase the risk of eating disorder development, thus I would not recommend this diet to someone who has experienced an eating disorder in the past.

Clean eating, when practiced responsibly and in a healthy manner, is safe, in my opinion. When it becomes more of an obligation than a preference to abide by a diet, the possibility of disordered eating habits occurring is heightened.

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