Causes Of Binge Eating
The exact causes of binge eating disorder are not known, but you are more likely to have an eating disorder if:
- you or a member of your family has a history of eating disorders, depression, or alcohol or drug misuse
- you’ve been criticised for your eating habits, body shape or weight
- you’re too worried about being slim, particularly if you also feel pressure from society or your job, for example, ballet dancers, models or athletes
- you have anxiety, low self-esteem, an obsessive personality or are a perfectionist
- you’ve been sexually abused
Why Do People Binge
Binge eating is often a mechanism for coping or an attempt to manage emotional pain or stress. Individuals often describe a feeling of being zoned out, unaware of the magnitude of food being consumed and lacking the ability to stop eating.
While certain thoughts and feelings can be temporarily relieved by a binge eating episode, it is often followed by intense emotional turmoil. Feelings of guilt about eating certain foods or eating in a certain way can contribute to the shame around having binge eating disorder. Shame and guilt can affect attention and concentration at school or work and can result in secretiveness around behaviors. It affects relationships and increases social isolation.
Although binge eating disorder has been an official clinical diagnosis for only four years, its a condition that has left a lasting impact on nearly eight million Americans.
Diagnosis Of Binge Eating Disorder
To diagnose binge eating disorder or other eating disorders, a doctor will need to:
- do a full physical examination
- ask questions about your health, including your emotional health and wellbeing, medical history and lifestyle.
Understanding the warning signs and symptoms and seeking help as soon as possible will help your recovery.
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Living With Binge Eating Disorder
Living with an eating disorder is a constant struggle because a person must eat food daily. People with BED have to navigate periods of restriction, as well as episodes of binge eating, and the associated emotions that manifest with both behaviors every day.
Careful attention should be paid to food restriction around BED episodes. The reason being that the first step of a binge episode involves restricting food intake to the point of individuals being excessively hungry later in the day, which can lead to mindless eating. Keeping a food journal that documents what patterns led to the bingeing episode is therefore an incredibly valuable treatment tool.
Here are a few additional tips on dealing with BED:
- Identify triggers
- Confide in a trusted friend or family member
- Find someone who can be supportive
- Attend group therapy for BED
- Focus on self-care
- Evaluate patterns with food paying attention to patterns of restriction
- Consider keeping a journal.
Beginning Of Experimental Psychology
Philosopher believed that the human mind was open to scientific investigation, even if the science is in some ways inexact. Mill proposed a “mental ” in which elementary thoughts could combine into ideas of greater complexity. began conducting research in in the 1830s. He articulated the principle that human perception of a stimulus varies according to its intensity.:61 The principle became known as the . Fechner’s 1860 Elements of Psychophysics challenged Kant’s negative view with regard to conducting quantitative research on the mind. Fechner’s achievement was to show that “mental processes could not only be given numerical magnitudes, but also that these could be measured by experimental methods.” In Heidelberg, conducted parallel research on sensory perception, and trained physiologist . Wundt, in turn, came to Leipzig University, where he established the psychological that brought experimental psychology to the world. Wundt focused on breaking down mental processes into the most basic components, motivated in part by an analogy to recent advances in chemistry, and its successful investigation of the elements and structure of materials. and soon created another influential laboratory at Leipzig, a psychology-related lab, that focused more on experimental psychiatry.
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Bed Holistic Health And Weight Loss
Overweight binge eaters represent a collision of two traditional treatment worlds: eating disorders and weight control. 30-40% of those seeking weight loss treatment meet the criteria for BED. In a residential weight control treatment setting, this link between overweight/obesity and binge eating is striking. Our mean BMI is 43.3 and data suggest that 43.7 % of our participants have BED. A host of co-morbidities results from this combination of eating pathology and obesity.
How Can I Get Help
It’s hard to know how many people may binge eat. Because people often feel guilty or embarrassed about out-of-control eating, many don’t talk about it or get help.
Because of these feelings, many people don’t get treatment for binge eating until they’re older. But getting help early makes it more likely that a person can get better before it causes health problems related to weight gain.
People with binge disorders are best treated by a team that includes a doctor, dietitian, and therapist. Treatment includes nutrition counseling, medical care, and talk therapy . The doctor might prescribe medicine to treat binge eating, anxiety, depression, or other mental health concerns.
If you binge eat, these tips can help:
- Don’t skip meals. You are more likely to overeat if you get too hungry.
- Practice mindful eating. Pay attention to what you eat and notice when you feel full.
- Identify triggers. Make a plan for how you can avoid or manage things that trigger bingeing.
- Be active. Regular exercise can feel good and help you manage your weight.
- Find ways to cope with strong feelings. Express yourself through music, art, dance, or writing. Talk to a friend or trusted adult, or try yoga, meditation, or taking a couple of deep breaths to relax.
You may find that it helps to surround yourself with supportive family members and friends. It’s best to avoid people who make negative comments about eating or weight because they can make you feel worse.
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What Is A Binge Eating Disorder
With Binge Eating Disorder , people experience recurring episodes of overeating that happen in a rapid manner and short timeframe. These episodes usually occur when they are not hungry and can extend past the point of a person reaching extreme fullness. People who struggle with this disorder may feel as if they have no control over their eating habits during an episode, where they cant stop eating, cant decide what to eat, or cant determine how much they should be eating.
If you are struggling with Binge Eating Disorder, it is common for your binge eating episodes to be marked by significant distress followed by feelings of shame, guilt, and depression. These episodes happen, on average, at least once a week for three months or longer. Unlike other forms of eating disorders, people who have Binge Eating Disorder do not usually use inappropriate or unhealthy weight control tactics such as fasting or purging to counteract their binges.
Individuals with Binge Eating Disorder may live in higher weight bodies, however, anyone at any weight may struggle with the disorder. For those at higher weights, cultural weight stigma and bullying experiences may play a significant role in the development of Binge Eating Disorder, as well as co-occurring mood disorders and addictions.
Binge Eating Disorder Treatment
Treatment for BED can be crucial in reducing the lifetime prevalence of the disorder, that is, reducing the likelihood one will struggle with BED behaviors for their lifetime.
As with most eating disorders, the number one, evidence-based treatment recommended is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy . One study notes that CBT has higher abstinence, is well-tolerated, and maintains remission for 1 or 2 years . CBT focuses on the impact that beliefs and thoughts have on subsequent feelings and behaviors, encouraging individuals to alter their core beliefs and thoughts in a way that then alters their behaviors.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy is also recommended, as it was created for individuals that struggle with emotion regulation, which is also correlated with BED. DBT focuses on how one can regulate their emotional states, tolerate distress, exist within the present moment, and communicate needs to others. All of these skills work effectively to reduce BED symptoms as well as the symptoms of disorders that often co-occur with BED.
Regardless of the theoretical orientation to treatment, the key is to receive treatment at all. Of course, be a conscious consumer and do not be afraid to ask your treatment team if they are using the most up-to-date, evidence-based treatments and, if they are not, why they are not. Even so, the likelihood of individual achieving remission of BED symptoms and recovery increases with any type of mental health treatment.
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Psychological Symptoms Of Binge Eating Disorder
Psychological signs and symptoms can include:
- preoccupation or obsession with eating, food or body image
- sensitivity to comments about food, dieting, exercise or body image
- feelings of shame, guilt and self-loathing, especially after a binge eating episode
- feelings of extreme distress, sadness and anxiety, especially after a binge eating episode
- a distorted body image or extreme dissatisfaction with body shape
- low self-esteem, depression, anxiety or irritability.
Tips For Helping Someone With Binge Eating Disorder
Encourage your loved one to seek help. The longer an eating disorder remains undiagnosed and untreated, the more difficult it will be to overcome, so urge your loved one to get treatment.
Be supportive. Try to listen without judgment and make sure the person knows you care. If your loved one slips up on the road to recovery, remind them that it doesnt mean they cant quit binge eating for good.
Avoid insults, lectures, or guilt trips. Binge eaters feel bad enough about themselves and their behavior already. Lecturing, getting upset, or issuing ultimatums to a binge eater will only increase stress and make the situation worse. Instead, make it clear that you care about the persons health and happiness and youll continue to be there.
Set a good example by eating healthily, exercising, and managing stress without food. Dont make negative comments about your own body or anyone elses.
Get more help
Binge Eating Disorder Symptoms, causes, and treatment options for binge eating disorder.
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Characteristics Of Binge Eating Disorder
Your eating habits may be distinctly different from the eating habits of obese people without the disorder and those who suffer from bulimia nervosa. You may have a very chaotic and/or unorganized way of eating such as: periods of binge eating and non-binge eating. In addition, you may be unable to control your eating habits.
While these characteristics can lead to obesity, obesity is not always caused by binge eating disorder. Obese people without binge eating disorder may be consistent in their dietary habits, which may include overeating. Furthermore, obesity is often caused by inadequate exercise in proportion to the amount eaten. Binge eaters enforce extreme control over their weight gain in between episodes of binge eating.
Diagnosing Binge Eating Disorder
To diagnose binge eating disorder, a health care provider familiar with all forms of eating disorders will need to form a therapeutic alliance with the patient and be able to have a meaningful conversation around the patient’s inner experience and relationship with food.
Many health care professionals who donât specialize in treating eating disorders will often overlook the laboratory tests and other impacts of restriction beyond binge eating. In some cases, patients may be told to diet and lose weight, perpetuating the issue.
There are a multitude of issues associated with BED that can be missed without a thorough examination of the patient. Make sure your care team tests for things like high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart health, and diabetes, and other signs of binge eating disorder.
These disorders include gastroesophageal reflux disease and sleep-related breathing issues like snoring or obstructive sleep apnea. The tests may involve:
- Blood tests and urinalysis
- Physical examination, including thyroid studies, and hormonal evaluations
- Consultation with a sleep disorder clinic
These are only a few procedures someone with BED could expect to happen when diagnosed with this disorder. The patient’s medical provider may decide more comprehensive tests are necessary.
According to the diagnostic manual published by the American Psychiatric Association for mental disorders, the criteria for diagnosing BED those with this condition will exhibit these behaviors:
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Binge Eating Disorder Diagnosis & Treatment
A life in complete recovery is possible. If you or a loved one is struggling with Binge Eating Disorder, you dont have to go through this alone. The Alliance is here to help. Visit our national, interactive database to find eating disorder treatment options near you today. Learn more about members of an eating disorder treatment team here, and discover recovery programs, services and support groups with The Alliance here. You are not alone! Help is available and recovery is possible with The Alliance.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Binge Eating Disorder
Binge eaters usually are unhappy about their weight and many feel depressed.
Someone who’s binge eating also might:
- eat a lot of food quickly
- hide food containers or wrappers in their room
- have big changes in their weight
- skip meals, eat at unusual times , and eat alone
- have a history of eating in response to emotional stress
People who binge might have feelings that are common in many eating disorders, such as depression, anxiety, guilt, or shame. They may avoid school, work, or socializing with friends because they’re ashamed of their binge eating problem or changes in their body shape and weight.
When kids or teen binge eat, parents may first suspect a problem when large amounts of food go missing from the pantry or refrigerator.
Binge eating is different from bulimia, another eating disorder. People with bulimia binge eat, but try to make up for overeating by throwing up, using laxatives, or over-exercising to lose weight.
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What Can I Expect In Recovery
If you feel stuck in a cycle of binge eating, take heart: Most people can overcome this disorder with treatment. It’s possible for you, too.
Most importantly, be patient with yourself. People with binge eating disorder often blame themselves. As you work toward recovery, you may have setbacks. Those bumps in the road aren’t unusual as you gradually gain more control over your eating.
Can Binge Eating Disorder Be Prevented
Although it might not be possible to prevent all cases of binge eating disorder, it is helpful to begin treatment as soon as symptoms start. In addition, teaching and encouraging healthy eating habits and realistic attitudes about food and body image might be helpful in preventing the development or worsening of eating disorders.
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Breaking 5 Myths Of Binge Eating
Binge Eating Disorder is the most common of all the eating disorders but incongruently, with the least treatment options for the sufferers. Until recently, BED was not even recognized as an actual disorder and could not be found in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual published by The American Psychiatric Association.
Medications For Binge Eating Disorder
Vyvanse , a stimulant used to treat moderate-to-severe binge eating disorders in adults, is the first FDA-approved medication for this purpose. Vyvanse can be habit-forming and misused. Its most common side effects are dry mouth or insomnia.
Vyvanse also carries more severe risks such as high blood pressure leading to heart failure. Also, involuntary twitching and uncontrolled muscle movements are associated with this medication.
Other medications can also reduce symptoms of BED:
- Dietary supplements
- Antidepressants and other psychiatric medications that address the common co-occurring conditions
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How Does Binge Eating Disorder Affect A Woman’s Health
Many, but not all, women with binge eating disorder are overweight or obese. Obesity raises your risk for many serious health problems:12
- High cholesterol
- Gallbladder disease
- Certain types of cancer, including breast, endometrial , colorectal, kidney, esophageal, pancreatic, thyroid, and gallbladder cancer13
- Problems with your menstrual cycle, including preventing ovulation, which can make it harder to get pregnant
People with binge eating disorder often have other serious mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, or problems with substance use. These problems can seriously affect a woman’s everyday life and can be treated.
Unscientific Mental Health Training
Some observers perceive a gap between scientific theory and its applicationin particular, the application of unsupported or unsound clinical practices. Critics say there has been an increase in the number of mental health training programs that do not instill scientific competence. Practices such as ” for infantile autism” memory-recovery techniques including and other therapies, such as and , may be dubious or even dangerous, despite their popularity. These practices, however, are outside the mainstream practices taught in clinical psychology doctoral programs.
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Eating Disorders And Depression
Many people with eating disorders also appear to have depression. It is believed that there may be a link between these 2 disorders. For example:
Research has shown that some people with binge eating disorder may respond well to antidepressant medicine that affects serotonin function in the body.
Biochemical similarities have been discovered between people with eating disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder , and people with OCD often have abnormal eating behaviors.
Reasonable Exercise Plans For Someone Recovering From Binge Eating Disorder
For those struggling with binge eating disorder, their exercise patterns tend to mirror their eating patterns falling prey to an all-or-nothing tendency. With food, this involves a restriction/binge cycle and for exercise, this all-or-nothing tendency usually shows up as a cycle of no pain/no gain exercise and then being sedentary.
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