- Mental Health
Comprehensive List of Food Phobias
What is Phobia?
According to Wikipedia, a phobia is defined as:
An irrational, persistent fear of certain situations, objects, activities, or persons. The main symptom of this disorder is the excessive, unreasonable desire to avoid the feared subject. When the fear is beyond one's control, or if the fear is interfering with daily life, then a diagnosis under one of the anxiety disorders can be made.
Up to 18% of Americans suffer from phobias, including 10-15% of all children. However, those that seek help have a high rate of remission. Successful treatment methods include Desensatization Therapy, Cognative Behavioral Therapy, and the use of certain antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications.
*Please note that phobias are not mere dislikes, but severe and paralyzing fear in response to the related trigger.
Food phobias fall under the diagnostic category of "specific phobias," which are irrational fears triggered by a particular environmental stimulus. While particularly common among people diagnosed with eating disorders, food phobias can also be found in otherwise mentally healthy people.
Below I've complied a comprehensive list of food-specific phobias. As you read it, you may feel the urge to laugh, but please remember to be sensitive in the presense of someone who struggles with one of these disorders. It is easy to make light of someone's fear, especially of something as seemingly innocuous as a common edible, but for the phobic, the fear is very real, and sometimes crippling.
List of Food-Related Phobias
- Acerophobia- Fear of sourness
- Alektorophobia- Fear of chicken
- Alliumphobia- Fear of garlic
- Bacillophobia- Fear of microbes
- Bacteriophobia- Fear of bacteria
- Botanophobia- Fear of plants
- Carnophobia- Fear of meat
- Cibophobia- Fear of food
- Consecotaleophobia- Fear of chopsticks
- Coprastasophobia- Fear of constipation
- Defecaloesiphobia- Fear of painful bowels movements
- Deipnophobia- Fear of dining or dinner conversations
- Dipsophobia- Fear of drinking
- Emetophoia- Fear of vomiting
- Frigophobia- Fear of cold things
- Geumophobia- Fear of taste
- Hematophobia- Fear of blood
- Hydrophobia- Fear of water
- Hygrophobia- Fear of liquids
- Ichthyophobia- Fear of fish
- Iophobia- Fear of poison
- Lachanophobia- Fear of vegetables
- Mageirocophobia- Fear of cooking
- Methyphobia- Fear of alcohol
- Mycophobia- Fear of mushrooms
- Necrophobia- Fear of dead things
- Obesophobia- Fear of gaining weight
- Oenophobia- Fear of wine
- Olfactophobia- Fear of smells
- Ornithophobia- Fear of birds
- Ostraconophobia- Fear of shellfish
- Osmophobia- Fear of odors
- Phagophobia- Fear of swallowing
- Pnigophobia- Fear of choking
- Rhypophobia- Fear of defecation
- Sitophobia- Fear of eating
- Teniophobia- Fear of tapeworms
- Thermophobia- Fear of hot things
- Toxophobia- Fear of being accidentally poisoned
- Urophobia- Fear of urine or urinating
- Verminophobia- Fear of germs
- Xanthophobia- Fear of the color yellow
- Xerophobia- Fear of dryness
As with any mental illness, you should never self-diagnose. If you or someone you know may suffer from an eating disorder or phobia, please see your physician for a referral. You are not crazy. There is help. Psychotherapy and psychiatry are key pieces to recovery.
To read a complete list of specific phobias, including those not related to food, visit the Phobia List, or to learn more about eating disorders in particular, please check out the links below: