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Binge eating is a pattern of disordered eating which consists of episodes of uncontrollable overeating. It is sometimes as a symptom of binge eating disorder. During such binges, a person rapidly consumes an excessive amount of food, typically sweet high-calorie foods of a soft texture, such as ice cream or cookies. Most people who have eating binges try to hide this behaviour from others, and often feel ashamed or depressed about their overeating. Eating binges can be followed by so-called compensatory behaviour, acts by which the person tries to compensate for the effects of overeating. Examples of such acts are induced vomiting, fasting, and heavy exercising.
Although people who do not have any mental disorder may occasionally experience episodes of overeating, frequent binge eating is often a symptom of an eating disorder. Binge eating is a central feature of bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder. It is also practiced by some people with an eating disorder not otherwise specified or anorexia nervosa.
Relationship to stress
- Gormally J, Black S, Daston S, Rardin D. (1982) The assessment of binge eating severity among obese persons. Addictive Behaviors Vol.7 47-55
- Fairburn, C.G. (1995). Overcoming Binge Eating. New York: Guilford Press. This book discusses who binges and why, how bingeing differs from overeating, and how a binge eater can gain control. It presents a step-by-step program for overcoming binge eating.
|Eating attitudes |Feeding practices | Overeating | Binge eating ||
|Types of Eating disorder|
|Anorexia nervosa | Bulimia nervosa | Binge eating disorder | Compulsive overeating ||
|Assessing eating disorders|
|[] | [] | [] ||
|Treating eating disorders|
|CBT | Psychotherapy | Family therapy|