Binge eating means
eating large amounts of food in a short time. A person with binge eating
disorder binges regularly for several months. When you binge, you feel like you
can't control your eating, and you feel unhappy about it afterward.
Binge eating disorder is not the same thing as
bulimia. Unlike bulimia, if you have binge eating
disorder, you don't vomit or try other ways to get rid of calories. But you
might try to limit how much food you eat between binges. Binge eating disorder
is sometimes called compulsive overeating.
Some people who binge
have a normal weight. But over time, many people who have binge eating disorder
gain weight and have problems from being
obese. People with binge eating disorder also often
anxiety, or other emotional problems.
eating disorder isn't a sign of weakness or a
character flaw. And it is not something you can overcome with just willpower.
Many people struggle with eating disorders for a long time. Some people try to
keep it a secret or deny that they have a problem. In most cases, you will need
treatment to get better. If you have binge eating disorder, treatment can
prevent health problems, help you feel better about yourself, and improve the
quality of your life.
not sure what causes binge eating disorder, but it seems to run in families.
Cultural attitudes about body shape and weight might also play a
role. Anxiety, depression, or
stress can cause some people to binge.
From time to time, most of
us feel like we have eaten more than we should. But eating too much every now
and then does not mean that you have binge eating disorder. If you have binge
eating disorder, you may:
- Eat way too much in a short period of time
(less than 2 hours) on a regular basis.
- Eat when you are not
hungry, to ease stress or to comfort yourself.
- Eat for emotional
reasons, such as being sad, angry, lonely, or bored.
- Feel like you
can't stop eating.
- Eat faster than normal when you
- Eat so much that you feel painfully full.
unhappy, upset, guilty, or depressed after you binge.
- Eat alone
because you are embarrassed about how much you eat.
Even if you don't have all the symptoms of binge eating
disorder, having even a few symptoms can be a sign of a problem that needs
treatment. It is important to get help right away if you or someone you know
has any of these symptoms.
can find out if you have binge eating disorder by doing a physical exam and
asking questions about your eating habits and past health. Your doctor may also
ask questions about your mental health and how you feel about food and the
shape of your body.