Binge Eating Disorder

Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is characterized by episodes of eating large amounts of food, beyond the point of feeling comfortably full. People struggling with binge eating disorder feel embarrassed and guilty about their eating, and often eat alone. After periods of binging, there are no purging behaviors, but sometimes there are periods of fasting or dieting. Research shows that Binge Eating Disorder is the most common of all eating disorders. Two thirds of binge eaters are women. Most individuals develop the disorder during adolescence or early adulthood. Binge eating disorder can have a significant impact on the health of those who suffer with it. Roughly 65% of people with binge eating disorder are obese, with even more being generally overweight. Individuals who develop binge eating disorder often have issues with depression, anxiety, substance abuse or self- esteem. People with BED often also suffer with negative body image, and a variety of physical and emotional issues related to this disorder. After a thorough nutrition assessment with special attention paid to any medical complications that may exist, areas of focus may include:

  • Macronutrient needs
  • Nutrition education
  • Distribution of intake throughout the day to prevent binges.
  • Normalizing eating patterns.
  • Recognizing and utilizing hunger/fullness cues.
  • Mindfullness
  • Exercise
  • Need for supplementation
  • Evaluating behaviors surrounding food
  • Assessment of changes in laboratory values
  • Planning to reduce and eliminate food-centered reactions to triggers.
  • Body image
  • Involvement of family when appropriate.
  • Referral to counseling services specializing in eating disorders.