What is it and what are my options?
What is binge-eating Disorder?
What causes the disorder? Can I be treated?
There are treatment options available for people who are suffering from binge-eating disorder. One must seek the help of a medical professional who specialize in eating disorders. Look for therapists with a master’s degree in clinical or counseling psychology, experience including developing treatment plans for those suffering from eating disorders, eating disorder counselors must generally meet the same requirements for licensed professional counselors, licensed clinical social workers, or licensed clinical psychologists- depending on their level of educational achievement (Psychology School guide, 2012).
There are different therapies that can help as well as drug therapy. CBT (Cognitive behavioral therapy) may help you cope better with issues that can trigger binge-eating episodes, such as negative feelings about your body or a depressed mood. It may also give you a better sense of control over your behavior and eating patterns (Mayo Clinic, 2014). There are also drug therapies and weight loss programs that can help.
Know your facts from your myths
FACT: Dieting can't "cure" binge eating disorder. In fact, traditional calorie-restriction diets can actually trigger binges, even in people who don't have binge eating disorder (CBS News, 2014).
MYTH #2: Binge-eaters have no willpower
FACT: Binge-eating disorder actually compels people to eat - just as alcoholism compels people to drink. There's now mounting evidence that, for binge eaters, eating activates specific regions of the brain in much the same way that using cocaine or heroin lights up specific brain regions in substance abusers (CBS News, 2014).
MYTH #3: Binge-eating is a female thing.
FACT: Binge-eating is more common in women, however, roughly one in five eating disorders of any kind are diagnosed in men (CBS News, 2014).
MYTH #4: Binge-eaters are fat.
FACT: Some binge-eaters are overweight, but not all. Many binge eaters use crash diets to maintain a normal weight - even though they might take in 2,000 or more excess calories on a daily basis. Some binge eaters are actually underweight (CBS News, 2014).
CBS News. (2014). Binge-eating: 11 dangerous myths. Retrieved from http://www.cbsnews.com/pictures/binge-eating-11-dangerous-myths/5/.
Mayo Clinic. (2014). Binge-eating disorder. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/binge-eating-disorder/basics/definition/con-20033155.
Men and Binge Eating Disorder.(November 1, 2011). [Video File]. Retrieved from http://abcnews.go.com/Health/video/binge-eating-disorder-14861041.
Nolen-Hoeksema, S. (2014). Abnormal psychology (6th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.
Psychology School Guide. (2012). How to become an eating disorder counselor. Retrieved from http://www.psychologyschoolguide.net/counseling-careers/becoming-an-eating-disorder-counselor/.
Womanshealth.gov. (2014). Binge eating disorder fact sheet. Retrieved from http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/binge-eating-disorder.html?from=AtoZ.