A Guide to Binge Eating Disorder

Gaining control over your heatlh


people who feel compelled to eat too much on a regular basis-at least once a week over a period of three months or more

how does it feel like

the feeling is that they can't control how much or what they're eating even if they're not hungry

after the binge they feel depressed, disgusted, ashamed

sometimes they are so ashamed that they hide from family and friends and eat alone until they feel sick

the stress or tension that they're feeling is only relieved by eating

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health impact

two-thirds of people with BED are obese and they are dealing with related health issues such as heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes

most have mental health problems (e.g. depression, bipolar disorder, substance abuse, anxiety)

they feel stressed, have low self esteem or body image shame

what causes BED?

a variety of factors are incriminated, such as the person's genes, psychology, background

stressful/ traumatic life events, like the death of a loved one, or being teased about weight

some people are extra sensitive to food cues ( smells or images of food )

the hypothalamus may not be sending correct messages about hunger and fullness

low serotonin level in the brain

there is hope

the target is to develop a healthier relationship with food, that meets the nutritional needs, and not the emotional ones

the first step is getting a diagnostic from a specialist

guidance to a psychiatrist who can perform different therapies ( cognitive - behavioral, interpersonal psychotherapy or dialectical behavior therapy), depending of the trigger factors involved in the disorder

a nutritionist will guide the person towards healthy eating habits

sometimes certain medications such as antidepressants or specific anti-seizure drugs may be prescribed 'off label' in order to control food cravings

in order to lose the extra pounds and keep them off for good, it is useful to apply to a weight loss program

we all can help

if there are signs that a loved one may have BED, there is a lot you can do to help them to overcome their paintful struggle

it is very important to know that you can't force them to change, and that the recovery must come from themselves

you can help by offering your compassion, encouragement and support throughout the treatment process

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