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Veggie-Phobic: Woman Left Shaking at Sight of Peas

Veggie-Phobic: Woman Left Shaking at Sight of Peas

Daily Mail UK

November 09, 2009

Student Vicki Larrieux cannot eat her five a day because she is frightened of vegetables.

The 22 -year-old suffers from an unusual fear known as lachanophobia, which leaves her sweating and stricken with panic attacks at the merest sight of a sprout or a pea.

Miss Larrieux, from Portsmouth, Hants, survives on a diet of meat, potatoes, cereals and an occasional apple but refuses to even accept a solitary slice of carrot on her dinner plate.

Vicki said: ’I have always had an irrational fear of vegetables – even as a child I used to properly freak out if some carrots or a few peas were on my plate.

’But as it continued into adult life I started to think it might not just be a dislike for vegetables but an actual phobia.

’Every time I would see vegetables – not just on my plate, but anywhere – I would get feelings of panic, start sweating and my heart rate would shoot up.

‘People might think it is a bit of a laughable affliction but I have a genuine fear of greens – it’s not just that I dislike the taste of sprouts or broccoli, but the actual sight of them fills me with dread and I could never touch them.’

The unusual fear affects just a few thousand people in Britain and treatments for the condition include ‘psychological re-programming’ to control the anxious response to seeing veg.

Vicki’s condition makes routine trips to the supermarket or a night out at a restaurant with boyfriend Joseph Jade, 25, a major problem.

Vicki added: ’It is a bit of an ordeal to go to the supermarket because the veg is usually right by the door.

‘My boyfriend is very understanding and does his best to accommodate me. It is a good job he isn’t a vegetarian because it just wouldn’t work.

‘I am learning to control my fear but it isn’t easy – it is a hard thing to have to bring up when I meet new people and I’m sure some people must think I’m taking the mickey.

‘But I’m confident that I will eventually overcome the phobia – I’d love to be able to sit down to a slap-up Sunday roast with a pile of greens and I’m sure one day that will happen.’

OTHER UNUSUAL PHOBIAS

Ancraophobia – A fear of wind

Aulophobia – A fear of flutes

Caligynephobia – A fear of beautiful women Eisoptrophobia – A fear of mirrors

Genuphobia – A fear of knees

Linonophobia – A fear of string

Vestiphobia – A fear of clothing

Xanthophobia – A fear of the colour yellow

Vicki first discovered her curious affliction when as a toddler she would refuse to eat her greens and break out into a tantrum.

Her parents would try and force her to eat her greens but from a very young age they soon realised the effect they were having.

Vicki said: ’My mum thought I was being fussy like most children but the physical effect was for all to see.

’I cannot remember much but I was told I would get all red and blotchy and be really irritable. I was taken to the doctors and diagnosed with lachanophobia.

‘When I was a child it was quite nice because I had a reason not to eat vegetables but now I am a bit older I am curious as to what they taste like.’

A spokesman for phobia charity Anxiety UK said: ’Around 13 per cent of Brits suffer a phobia of some form.

‘There are treatments available including medication and self-help groups for all manner of phobias, but anyone fearing they may have a problem should see a GP first for proper diagnosis.’


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