Binge eating disorder is a serious mental illness that can cause extreme weight loss or gain. Read more to learn How You Overcome Binge Eating Disorder.
The term Binge Eating Disorder (BED) has become more and more common in recent years. However, many people may not understand exactly what it means or how to treat it. BED is different from other eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia, which involve purging or excessive exercise as opposed to overeating. Although the average person might think that BED isn’t as harmful as these other disorders, its effects can still be devastating and life-threatening, as well as difficult to treat without professional help.
Understand The Condition of Binge Eating Disorder
The most important thing that you need to understand about binge eating disorder is that it’s not just a question of willpower. It’s not a choice. It’s an uncontrollable physiological and mental urge. Studies have shown that those who suffer from binge eating disorder don’t consume more calories on average than those who don’t.
If you’re ready to overcome binge eating disorder, you can do so. If you’re willing to understand it and learn how to control it. Then you will take a huge step towards preventing yourself from falling back into unhealthy behavior. Let’s get started!
You wouldn’t blame an alcoholic for not being able to stop drinking. Or a person with depression for failing to be happy. So, don’t blame yourself for not being able to stop eating. it simply isn’t in your control.
Help Others Overcome Binge Eating Disorder
With an estimated 30 million people suffering from binge eating disorder in America alone, chances are you know someone who is currently dealing with or has dealt with binge eating disorder at some point in their life. There are a lot of misconceptions about what it means to suffer from binge eating disorder and how to overcome it. Because of these misconceptions, many individuals who could benefit from treatment do not get help.
If you or someone you know is suffering from binge eating disorder, it’s time to take action. Below, you will find a few tips that can help you or your loved one overcome binge eating disorder and begin living a healthier life.
The first step to overcoming binge eating disorder is admitting that there is a problem. The last thing someone suffering from binge eating disorder wants to do is talk about their problem. They will do anything they can to avoid getting help. Often, friends and family are well aware of their loved one’s struggle with binge eating disorder but don’t know how to approach them about it.
Join A Support Group
Professionals, friends, and family are great sources of support. However, they may also have strong opinions about how to handle your intuitive eating disorder. A support group for people with binge eating disorders is a great way of sharing your experience and learning from others in similar situations.
Groups can be a positive influence on your life, but they may also have an educational effect that doesn’t necessarily apply to your particular situation. Although support groups can be helpful, there aren’t any one way to overcome binge eating disorder. There are only ways that work for you.
You will find the right support group for you if you attend as many meetings as possible with other people. When it comes to managing meetings, support groups are meant to help you be independent and creative. You can ask for help if you feel a meeting is not right for you.
Consider Medical Treatment
Binge eating disorder can be a mental issue. It is not a physical condition. Cognitive behavioral therapy is often used to treat binge eating disorder. This can help you recognize destructive thoughts patterns and behaviors that lead to binging. To help with your cravings, your doctor might prescribe antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication in combination with therapy for extreme binge eating.
Professional treatment is recommended if your binge-eating disorder is causing you distress and disrupts your daily life. Working with a therapist or doctor to treat a binge-eating disorder can be very effective. This is especially true if medical intervention is required.
Discuss all options with your doctor to determine which one is best for you. Although diet and lifestyle changes can be helpful for those with disordered eating disorders, there are no universal solutions. Each person will need to be treated individually. Some people might need more support in changing their destructive thoughts and behaviors. Others may be better suited to taking antidepressants or other medications.
It’s easy to overindulge when you’re sitting on your couch. On a binge eating day, step away from your food and head outside for a walk or hop on a treadmill. Take time to appreciate nature and reset yourself before heading back in to binge on another episode of The Walking Dead . Any activity will help reduce stress and clear your mind—and burning calories is an added bonus.
Use a pedometer to track your physical activity, and try to increase your daily step count by 10 percent each week. For example, if you currently average 3,000 steps per day, aim for at least 3,300 next week. Start with smaller goals and work up over time; reaching high mileage too quickly can increase injuries.
Focus on your fitness level by creating realistic goals. Don’t stress yourself out by setting a goal of running a marathon if you haven’t exercised since high school gym class. Instead, start small and work your way up to that long-term goal. Maybe you start with jogging one mile per day and increase it by 1 mile each week until you reach 5 miles per day—and then increase it again. Or maybe you decide to aim for 10 pushups in two weeks and push yourself to do 15 in another two weeks.
Track your progress as you achieve these goals, which will motivate you to continue reaching for more than ever before. Take care not to overdue it, though; make sure you rest enough between workouts or ask your doctor about other strategies before attempting a new exercise regimen if you’re over 35 years old or out of shape. The key is finding what works best for YOU!
Create Healthy Boundaries
Boundaries are important for your psychological health, and setting limits on eating is a good way to set healthy boundaries. To overcome binge eating disorder, it’s important to define what is and isn’t a healthy amount of food for you to eat at one time. This will help you stick with that amount during times of stress. It also helps establish your own sense of self-worth and self-respect—and can play an important role in your overall mental health.
Be honest with yourself. What is a healthy amount of food for you to eat at one time? Think about times when you’ve binged in the past, and what that looked like for you. Consider your body type, any medical conditions or special circumstances that may affect how much food is appropriate. It might take some trial and error to figure out what is a healthy amount for you to eat in one sitting.
If you’re ready to start your weight loss journey, but don’t know where to begin, Weight Watchers is a good place to start. It offers support from other people who are trying to lose weight and tips for healthy meals and snacks. It also provides one-on-one coaching, which is essential when learning how to overcome binge eating disorder. Each week you meet with your coach individually, and go over your personal goals.
Don’t Keep Hidden Foods In The House
If you’re trying to overcome binge eating disorder, start by doing a thorough clean-out of your fridge and pantry. Try to avoid keeping foods around that might trigger bingeing. Also, be sure not to keep any trigger foods in your house. If you try binging on food and don’t succeed, then you’ll be more likely to reach for those unhealthy options later on.
If you have a list of trigger foods, avoid keeping those items in your house. Keep track of these foods in your phone so that you can always be prepared to shop for healthier options. Food tracking apps are also a great way to control binge eating disorder. If you keep yourself aware of what’s being consumed, it’s more difficult to overeat and binge.
Avoid going grocery shopping when hungry. Also, make sure to keep your purchases in check so you don’t buy impulse items. If you have a list that includes unhealthy foods that trigger binging episodes, you should avoid buying them. If all else fails you can hire a professional organizer for help with getting rid of unhealthy food from your home.
Manage Stress Well
A large part of binge eating is stress; after all, binging is a coping mechanism for dealing with stressful situations. With stress being such a big part of binge eating, it’s important to manage your stress well so that you can prevent overindulging. Here are four simple and easy ways to do that
1) Practice mindfulness;
2) Manage your time wisely
3) Get plenty of sleep
4) Limit alcohol intake.
In conjunction with therapy and medication (if needed), these strategies will help reduce binge eating in no time!
Practice mindful eating
Mindfulness is defined as the intentional, accepting and non-judgmental focus of one’s attention on the emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring in the present moment (Kabat-Zinn). What that means is by practicing mindfulness, you can learn to better understand how you respond to stressful situations. With continued practice, it allows you to understand your triggers so that you can prevent them from happening again. That way when faced with a stressful situation, instead of turning to food for comfort, you turn towards more positive activities like reaching out to a friend or going for a walk or even getting lost in a good book.
Food Addiction is a condition where people eat large amounts of food in a short period of time, and feel compelled to continue eating. This is different from binge eating disorder, which is when someone eats a lot of food in one sitting, and feels guilty afterwards.
The cause of both conditions is similar, and includes genetics, stress, and poor diet. However, the treatment is completely different. For example, if you suffer from food addiction, you may need to go through detoxification before you can begin to address the underlying issues.
Binge eating disorder is characterized by episodes of uncontrollable overeating followed by feelings of guilt, shame, and disgust. People who suffer from binge eating disorder often feel out of control when they eat, and may also purge themselves by vomiting or using laxatives. Bulimia nervosa is characterized by recurrent episodes of inappropriate compensatory behaviors such as self-induced vomiting, fasting, excessive exercise, and use of diuretics. Both disorders are associated with significant distress and impairment in functioning.
Emotional eating and Binge Eating Disorder
Binge eating disorder (BED) is characterized by episodes of uncontrollable overeating, which may be accompanied by feelings of guilt or disgust. The most common symptoms include:
- Overeating without feeling physically full
- Feeling guilty about overeating
- Not being able to stop eating once started
- Being unable to lose weight despite repeated attempts
- Having a strong desire to eat but experiencing little pleasure
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) defines binge eating disorder as “recurrent episodes of binge eating, usually accompanied by subjective distress.” In other words, if you feel distressed while eating, then you likely suffer from binge eating disorder.
What Causes Binge Eating?
The causes of binge eating disorder are complex and multifactorial. Some researchers believe that genetics play a role in the development of this condition. For example, some people inherit certain genes that make them prone to developing binge eating disorder. Other research suggests that early life experiences contribute to the development of binge eating disorder. This includes childhood trauma, sexual abuse, physical neglect, emotional abuse, mental illness in parents, substance use disorders, etc.
Other factors that increase the risk of developing binge eating disorder include:
- Gender – Women are twice as likely to develop BED than men.
- Age – People who start bingeing before age 25 are more likely to have BED compared to those who don’t binge until later in life.
- Body mass index (BMI) – Those with higher BMIs are at greater risk of developing binge eating.
- Race/Ethnicity – African Americans and Hispanics are more likely to experience binge eating.
- Family history – Individuals who have family members with BED are more likely to develop this condition themselves.
Take Care Of Yourself Physically & Mentally
This may sound redundant, but staying healthy is key. If you feel run down or stressed, your bingeing may be a symptom of other issues going on in your life. Take care of yourself and make sure you’re sleeping well and eating healthy meals regularly. It can also help to schedule regular check-ins with friends who can give you an objective opinion about what’s going on in your life. And it doesn’t hurt to consult a mental health professional if you feel like there are deeper underlying issues that aren’t being addressed.
Be honest with them, too—even if they tell you things are fine and there isn’t anything wrong (and they probably will), trust that it can always get better than it currently is. Try to use your bingeing as motivation to improve these areas in your life. Consider it fuel for achieving bigger goals for yourself!
Start Small With One Goal And Build On It!
A very common mistake that binge eaters make is to set multiple, lofty goals to get back on track. These over-the-top intentions seem innocent enough, but research shows that they actually inhibit your ability to succeed. Studies show that people who break up their ultimate goal (losing 50 pounds) into smaller steps (losing 5 pounds at a time), are much more likely to achieve their goal than those who don’t. Set one goal per week and commit to sticking with it until you reach it. Soon you will find yourself getting in better shape and losing weight quickly!