Monday, November 03, 2008

eco-nut, the next addition to the DSM?

How far is too far? I read the article below as a spoof, but do others see it as a serious issue? Does the fact that it makes me nervous to watch a friend staring into my fridge with the door wide open mean I have anxiety? To me, this is all quite amusing, but it does make me wonder about an outsider's perspective.

From the 'Sunday Telegraph':

'Curse of the carborexic'
By Elle Halliwell

November 02, 2008 12:00am

A DARK side to being carbon-conscious has been discovered, with a growing number of people becoming green to the extreme. Experts are warning the global warming panic is promoting obsessive compulsive disorders among some. Dubbed "carborexics'' or "dark greens'', these individuals will factor their carbon impact into every aspect of their life and go to extremes to avoid using energy.

According to a study conducted by Porter Novelli this month, four per cent of Americans now fit the profile of a carborexic. Participants of the study who were considered dark green included a man who relieved himself on his lawn to save water, and a woman whose family slept en masse to save on heating.

Head of the University of Sydney Anxiety Disorders Clinic Dr Mairwen Jones had seen an increase in patients suffering from climate change-related obsessive compulsive `checking' disorders. She explained that some patients had begun checking their gas and power meters constantly to monitor their usage, while others worried about their petrol consumption and their car's odometer reading. "A person who says: 'I constantly check the tap', now it's not that they're worried about a flood, but they say 'I don't want to waste water with elevated temperatures and drought, and I'm worried about my impact on the environment'''.

Founder and CEO of eco retailer Todae, Danin Kahn, said while he was obsessed with reducing his carbon footprint, it was a way to lead by example. "You've got to be really passionate about it or it becomes too difficult,'' he said. "I don't eat any meat, when I drive I drive a hybrid, I try to walk to work as often as I can
and I power my gadgets with solar.''

In September Mr Kahn, 31, went on a no-plastic diet. "I went cold turkey; I didn't purchase anything with plastic,'' he said. Founder of raw cuisine catering company Conscious Choice Julie Mitsios runs workshops on how to prepare food without cooking. She said demand for classes was unprecedented, as people realized the impact their diet had on carbon consumption.

People with signs of OCD should contact the Sydney Anxiety Disorders Clinic on 9351 9426."

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