Binge Eating Disorder Treatment Medication

Fluoxetine And Bed Treatment

Binge Eating Disorder Triggers and Treatments

Fluoxetine, more commonly known as Prozac, is another pharmaceutical drug that is FDA-approved to treat eating disorders. However, the eating disorder it is approved to treat is Bulimia Nervosa, not BED.

Even so, researchers are looking into how this drug can be used to treat BED and have seen success.

The use of Fluoxetine has led to greater rates of reduction in target binge eating, psychiatric, and weight symptoms than placebo and showed significantly higher binge eating remission rates .

It is important to note that research also indicates Fluoxetine is more effective when paired with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which addresses the behavioral underpinnings of BED mentioned earlier .

Pharmacological treatment for BED can be hugely beneficial when it comes to how neurobiology and co-occurring disorders impact binge eating disorder. However, it seems clear that the most effective treatment involves both medication-management and therapy.


Hanlon, P. . FDA approves drug to treat binge eating. New England Psychologist, retrieved from

Carcieri, E. M. . Look before you leap: binge-eating disorder, Vyvanse, and evidence-based psychotherapies. Eating Disorder Therapy LA. Retrieved from .

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Enhance The Public Health Impact Of Current Treatments

There is a need to translate evidence-based treatments for BED into clinical settings in order to increase access to care. Although there are robust treatments for BED, their use in clinical practice is relatively scarce . Dissemination and implementation science will enable the identification of the most effective strategies for training practitioners and implementing treatments in diverse clinical settings in a sustainable manner. For example, researchers may examine the relative effectiveness of traditional training models versus models that promote systemic change , to identify which will most likely increase adoption, penetration, and sustainability of treatments.

Furthermore, the potential for telecare, the internet, and other technologies to enhance access to treatments for BED is a burgeoning area of research. For example, one study found that email bulimia therapy was more effective than self-directed writing and a wait-list control in reducing binge eating . Internet-based CBTgsh has also shown preliminary efficacy , and other technologies such as texting and daily electronic diaries have shown efficacy for problems such as smoking and obesity . Such studies demonstrate that scalable therapies for BED may be as effective as more intensive treatments. However, relatively high attrition rates seen in such therapies must be addressed effectively by, for example, enhancing treatment engagement and adherence .

What Medications Are Used To Treat Binge Eating Disorders

Various drug classes are helpful in treating binge eating disorder, including SSRIs, anticonvulsants, and appetite suppressants. The most promising among these is topiramate, an anticonvulsant drug that can significantly reduce binge frequency and help control weight gain.

Another medication, lisdexamfetamine dimesylate , is the first drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration for binge eating disorders in adults. This medication is commonly used to treat ADHD . It is believed that this medication helps control impulsive behaviors that lead to binge eating and weight gain.

Doctors also use certain medications off-label to treat binge eating disorders. Meaning that while the FDA does not approve these medicines to treat binge eating, a physician can prescribe them for this medical condition if it is deemed to be beneficial for the patients. Medications like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors , tricyclic antidepressants , bupropion , and the anti-seizure drug topiramate may be used off-label for this purpose.

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Binge Eating Disorder Prevention

  • Eat breakfast. It is common for people with this condition to skip breakfast. You may be able to resist the urge to eat a big meal later in the day if you eat breakfast.
  • Find and use your support group. It is much easier to deal with a condition like this if you have family, friends, and healthcare professionals to support and encourage you.
  • Remove binge foods from your house. If you are aware of certain foods that are more likely to trigger a binge-eating episode, you should remove them and avoid keeping them in your house.
  • Avoid dieting, unless it is supervised by a physician. Dieting can lead to more binge-eating episodes. You should always talk with your doctor before starting any weight loss program.
  • Reduce and manage stress. Stress is a big trigger for binge eating so try mindfulness and meditation practices, yoga, exercise, and deep breathing to relax and control your stress instead of turning to food for comfort.
  • Get regular exercise. Exercise can help with weight loss, improve body image, reduce anxiety symptoms, and boost your mood.

Can Medication Help Treat Binge Eating Disorder

Best Supplements for Binge Eating

Eating disorder treatment is a complex and sophisticated process involving dozens of different techniques. These range from nutrition education and meal planning to experiential therapy and everything in between. Depending on the eating disorder being treated, individuals might engage in CBT, DBT, or another form of behavioral therapy, and both individual and group talk therapy are mainstays in most treatment facilities.

Binge eating disorder treatment uses many of the same techniques as those used in anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa treatment. For all the advanced treatment and psychiatric techniques used in eating disorder treatment, medications are not prescribed nearly as often as they are for other psychological illnesses. Unlike major depression or psychosis, there are no medications designed entirely for binge eating disorder. As such, medications are not considered prominent tools in its treatment.

However, when used in conjunction with binge eating disorder therapy, medications can help control symptoms and support individuals in working toward becoming recovered. By using this multi-faceted approach to treatment, therapists can assist their patients in overcoming the barriers to recovery from binge eating disorder. To go into the treatment process with confidence, it is important to learn about the top reasons to use binge eating disorder medication and what to expect from each option.

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Is There A Cure For Binge Eating Disorder

Binge eating disorder is a treatable condition.

The goals of binge eating disorder treatment are to:

  • Stop or lessen binges.
  • Help the person lose weight.
  • Address underlying psychological problems related to the disorder.1

Treatment is tailored to the individual and should address the disorder itself as well as any concurrent medical or mental health issues.

Most binge eating recovery centers will use a multidisciplinary approach and have a variety of professionals on staff such as psychotherapists, psychiatrists, medical doctors, nurses, and dieticians.

What Are The Side Effects Of Antidepressants

Just like any other medicine, antidepressants can cause side effects. One potential side effect, appetite loss, can actually be helpful for those who binge eat. But sometimes antidepressants can have the opposite effect, increasing appetite and leading to weight gain, which can make them counterproductive for people with binge eating disorder.

Other side effects of antidepressants include:

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Behavior Modification And Other Alternatives To Medication Treatment

Cognitive behavior therapy is a treatment of choice in binge eating disorder , especially in the context of high levels of specific eating disorder psychopathology, such as overvaluation of body shape and weight. A randomized placebo-controlled trial found that CBT with placebo was superior to fluoxetine only, and adding fluoxetine to CBT did not enhance findings compared to adding placebo to CBT at 12-month follow-up after treatment completion.

A meta-analysis of 45 studies found only moderate support for the efficacy of CBT and CBT guided self-help, and modest support for interpersonal psychotherapy , selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors , and lisdexamfetamine in the treatment of adults with BED in terms of cessation of or reduction in the frequency of binge eating.

Family therapy should be considered when family dynamics figure prominently as triggers for binging and in children and younger adolescents. Family therapy can be very helpful, but has not been proven superior to other approaches for BED such as interpersonal psychotherapy or dialectical behavior therapy .

Family therapy can be effective to improve communication by decreasing negative emotional expressivity. Improved positive communication between family and friends of the person with BED may play an important role in encouraging persistence with treatment.

IPT is a proven treatment for BED and focuses on identification of interpersonal conflict as triggers for binges.

Weight Loss Programs Often Fail

Pagoto on ADHD drug to treat binge eating

Other ways of addressing binge eating behavior, via extreme dieting or weight loss programs, often fail to properly and permanently address causes and symptoms of binge eating disorder. In many cases, strict commitment to weight loss, without emphasis on behavioral change, can prolong symptoms and associated risks.

Walden provides treatment for binge eating disorder at all levels of care inpatient, residential, partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient and outpatient treatment. Our goal is to help you build the skills, confidence and sense of hope that will guide you to a full and lasting recovery.

Our specialized intensive outpatient program includes individual and group therapy, as well as nutrition education. Our outpatient practice offers medication management, in addition to support from a dietitian and various forms of therapy.

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Naltrexone For Binge Eating

Primary use of Naltrexone

Primarily, Naltrexone is used to treat alcohol or opioid dependence. It reduces cravings and the feeling of euphoria linked with substance abuse disorder. An opioid antagonist, Naltrexone, works by blocking the effects of opioids, both within the body and outside.

Overlap between binge eating disorder and substance abuse disorder

Compared to substance abuse disorder , BED both face episodes that include craving and indulging in the craving. BED and SAD both show similar neurological pathways. Some people who suffer from BED may also be addicted to food, although the scientific community has not yet agreed on its definition.

Consumption of highly palatable food stimulates the release of opioids. This means opioid antagonists can suppress this action, reducing the consumption of palatable food.

The above and the connection between BED and SAD may be the reason why Naltrexone works for patients with binge eating disorder.

Treating binge eating disorder with Naltrexone

Naltrexone has been found effective in those having binge eating disorder. It alters the hypothalamic brain regions that play a role in regulating appetite and energy expenditure. Naltrexone also affects the reward system, which mediates eating behavior. Clinical trials suggest that the drug also induces considerable weight loss.

Low dose of Naltrexone

How Naltrexone works

Naltrexone produces blockade of the opiate system, lowering eating driven by anticipated reward and food craving.

How Does Ldx Work And Why Does It Reduce Binge Eating

LDX is inactive outside of the body. The magic only happens after it is absorbed by the digestive tract and converted into an amphetamine by the blood. After its transformation, LDX has the job of increasing the brain’s norepinephrine and dopamine, two chemicals involved in regulating stress and eating motivation . It encourages brain cells to release more dopamine and norepinephrine while preventing them from cleaning up the chemical excess.5

It’s unclear why increasing these brain chemicals can reduce binge eating, but it might be because people who binge eat have atypical levels of norepinephrine6 and dopamine.7

While LDX has demonstrated to be a safe treatment for some people, its conversion into an amphetamine makes it a Schedule II controlled medication with abuse potential if taken at incorrect dosages.3 Therefore, while the abuse potential for LDX is low if taken at correct doses,3 doctors should always consider a patients history of stimulant substance use, suicide attempts, mania, or cardiac disease before prescribing it.8

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When Is Medication Used

Cognitive behavioral therapy and counseling are usually the first steps in treating the disorder. But sometimes doctors recommend medications and therapy together. Your doctor might prescribe medication alone if therapy isnât working or available to you.

Binge eating disorder can happen along with other mental health disorders like depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. If you have one of these conditions, treating it with certain medications might help against your bingeing, too.

What Is Binge Eating Disorder And What Are The Symptoms

Integrative Medicine for Binge Eating

People with BED may eat a lot of food in a short amount of time, even if they arent hungry. Emotional stress or destress often plays a role and might trigger a period of binge eating.

A person might feel a sense of release or relief during a binge but experience feelings of shame or loss of control afterward .

For a healthcare professional to diagnose BED, three or more of the following symptoms must be present:

  • eating much more rapidly than normal
  • eating until uncomfortably full
  • eating large amounts without feeling hungry
  • eating alone due to feelings of embarrassment and shame
  • feelings of guilt or disgust with oneself

People with BED often experience feelings of extreme unhappiness and distress about their overeating, body shape, and weight (,

An episode of binge eating can be triggered by stress, dieting, negative feelings relating to body weight or body shape, the availability of food, or boredom .


The causes of BED are not fully known. As with other eating disorders, a variety of genetic, environmental, social, and psychological risks are associated with its development.

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Luxury And Executive Facilities

Luxury programs include many of the same treatment services as inpatient programs. However, they include extra amenities and are often located in desirable locations such as near the ocean or in the mountains.

Many working professionals and business executives choose to attend a binge eating disorder treatment center that has executive facilities and amenities such as meeting rooms and work spaces.

These types of centers tend to have a higher cost than standard treatment options.

Although each recovery center is unique, some of the many amenities and services that may be provided at these facilities include:

  • Recreational equipment.

A Comprehensive Guide To Binge Eating Disorder Medication

Home»A Comprehensive Guide to Binge Eating Disorder Medication

Binge eating disorder is a severe eating problem that causes various physical and psychological complications without the patients good consciousness of the condition. Medication is one of the primary treatment options for this abnormal eating behavior. Read on to learn more about binge eating disorder medication.

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We are standing by 24/7 to discuss your treatment options. Our representatives work solely for AAC and will discuss whether an AAC facility may be an option for you.

Our helpline is offered at no cost to you and with no obligation to enter into treatment. Neither nor AAC receives any commission or other fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a visitor may ultimately choose.

For more information on AACs commitment to ethical marketing and treatment practices, or to learn more about how to select a treatment provider, visit our About AAC page.

If you wish to explore additional treatment options or connect with a specific rehab center, you can browse top-rated listings or visit SAMHSA.

What Is Binge Eating

Binge Eating Disorder (BED): Diagnosis and Treatment Overview

Binge Eating disorder is characterized by episodes of consuming large amounts of food followed by a feeling of shame or guilt. This disorder is different from Bulimia Nervosa, which is characterized by episodes of binge eating followed by purging behaviors such as vomiting or using laxatives.

Binge Eating Disorder affects about three percent of American adults, and is more common in women than men. If you think you may be struggling with Binge Eating Disorder, therapy can be an effective treatment option. Heres what you need to know about binge eating therapy and how it can help you heal.

The good news is that there are treatment options available that can help you to recover from this disorder. One such option is Binge Eating Therapy.

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How Is Bed Diagnosed

While some people may occasionally overeat, such as at Thanksgiving or a party, it does not mean they have BED, despite having experienced some of the symptoms listed above.

BED typically starts in the late teens to early twenties, although it can occur at any age. People generally need support to help overcome BED and develop a healthy relationship with food. If left untreated, BED can last for many years .

To be diagnosed, a person must have had at least one binge eating episode per week for a minimum of three months .

The severity ranges from mild, which is characterized by one to three binge eating episodes per week, to extreme, which is characterized by 14 or more episodes per week .

Another important characteristic is not taking action to undo a binge. This means that, unlike bulimia, a person with BED does not throw up, take laxatives, or over-exercise to try and counteract a binging episode.

Like other eating disorders, its more common in women than men. However, its more common among men than other types of eating disorders (

Although these health risks are significant, there are a number of effective treatments for BED.


BED is linked to an increased risk of weight gain and obesity, as well as associated diseases like diabetes and heart disease. There are also other health risks, including sleep problems, chronic pain, mental health problems, and reduced quality of life.

Best Medications For Binge Eating Disorder

Drug name
3.75mg/23mg to 15mg/92mg once daily. Tingling or prickling, dry mouth, constipation, headache, upper respiratory infection

Your healthcare professional will determine the right dosage based on your response to the treatment, medical binge eating disorder, weight, and age. Other possible serious side effects may exist this is not a complete list.

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Should You Try To Lose Weight If You Have Binge Eating Disorder

Losing weight may help prevent or reduce some of the health problems related to carrying excess weight. Binge eating may make it hard to lose weight and keep it off.

If you have binge eating disorder and are overweight, a weight-loss program that helps you develop a structured eating plan and address problem thoughts, particularly about eating and weight, may be helpful. Some people with binge eating disorder require treatment for their binge eating before entering a weight management program. However, some people with binge eating disorder do just as well as people who do not binge eat in behavioral treatment programs.

Talk with your health care professional about whether you should try to manage your binge eating before entering a weight management program. A licensed nutrition professional, such as a registered dietitian trained in disordered eating can help you adopt healthier eating patterns. Learn more on treatment at the National Institute of Mental Health.

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