Have you heard of orthorexia? Why is it important to hear stories about men who suffered from eating disorders? In what way is knowledge really power? In this podcast, Dr. Castagnini speaks with Jason Wood about his battle with orthorexia and how he is fighting to combat the myth that only women suffer from eating disorders.


Jason Wood is turning his own battle with orthorexia, anxiety, and OCD into a mission to raise awareness and confront the stigmas and stereotypes that exist around men and mental health Visit his website and connect on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Subscribe to his YouTube channel.


  • What is orthorexia?
  • Orthorexia and social media
  • Recovery and wellbeing

What is orthorexia?

Basically what it is, is an addiction to healthy eating. In my case I was trying to eat as clean and pure as possible for health benefits and it went to the extreme … while they might be innocent at the beginning, overtime, somebody who develops orthorexia the list of foods that are off-limits seems to grow exponentially while foods on the good list is shrinking. (Jason Wood)
Like some other eating disorders, orthorexia is concerned with labeling food as either good or bad. Over time as the disorder develops, it may trick you into thinking that there are more and more foods that are “bad” for you that you should avoid eating, while the “good” foods that you can eat become more and more difficult to come by. This worsens over time until someone with orthorexia feels that they can only eat a very specific thing, otherwise, they cannot eat at all for fear of eating something “bad”.
You’re looking for reasons to cut food out of your diet and that’s the point that it got to for me. That’s when it got to that extreme point where it was no longer just wanting to eat health, it was an unhealthy addiction to being healthy. (Jason Wood)

Orthorexia and social media

Orthorexia is linked to being obsessed with eating a certain quality of food – following a strict regime of “good” foods – instead of being concerned about the number of foods. When it comes to social media, where a lot of things are polished, insincere, and where people may be trying to sell you products or fad diets, there is a lot of false information and sometimes people who suffer from orthorexia get caught up in the misinformation about certain foods because the people who are talking about them look so “healthy”.

Recovery and wellbeing

Knowledge is power. In the sense of an eating disorder, having an understanding of what it is can really help you to overcome it.
Once I found [the term] orthorexia and began to read other people’s stories and journeys with it, it started to shed some light on my own life and my own experience and made me really understand what I was up against. Being able to understand my opponent, I feel like that’s when I was finally able to get better and to start fighting back. (Jason Wood)
Recovery can take a long time, but good places to spot your recovery progress are in your physical body and in your mindset. A good sign of recovery is once your thoughts begin to change for the better, and the eating disorder no longer has a stronghold on how you perceive something. You are able to take control of your thoughts, and stop yourself from doing what the disorder tells you to do.

Books mentioned in this episode:

Jason Wood – Starving for Survival: A Memoir publishing January 2022



I am a licensed Psychologist and Certified Eating Disorder Specialist. While I may have over 20 years of clinical experience, what I also have is the experience of having been a patient who had an eating disorder as well. One thing that I never had during all of my treatment was someone who could look me in the eye and honestly say to me "hey, I've been there. I understand". Going through treatment for an eating disorder is one of the hardest and scariest things to do. I remember being asked to do things that scared me. Things I now know ultimately helped me to get better. But, at the time, I had serious doubts and fears about it. If even one of my providers had been able to tell me "I know it's scary, but I had to go through that part too. Here's what will probably happen...." then perhaps I would not have gone in and out of treatment so many times. My own experience ultimately led me to specialize in treating eating disorders. I wanted to be the therapist I never had; the one who "got it". I will be giving you my perspective and information as an expert and clinician who has been treating patients for over 2 decades. But don't just take my word for it...keep listening to hear the truly informative insights and knowledge guest experts have to share. I am so happy you are here!


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