Eating disorders become more prevalent these days like anorexia and binge eating. Nonetheless, statistics show that more women suffer from binge eating. These women just could not stop eating, experiencing health problems in the end. Experts, on the other hand, introduce ways on how to stop binge eating.
Countless women suffer from this problem, but don’t know that they’re having such issue. Biological Psychiatry, a journal, presents research about approximately 3.5 percent of women’s population having this problem also known as BED. According to Harrison Pope Jr., MD, of Harvard Medical School, BED is an actual disorder and not a mere eating habit pattern.
So, how to stop binge eating problem? Here are the three steps that can help stop this disorder forever.
Understanding BED is the first step to getting treatment. What is binging anyway? What classifies as binging? Binging may depend on the uncontrolled amount of eating meals. A single binging episode can include pizza, pies, cakes and desserts, and other fast food meals. Pope, who is also a psychiatry professor in the aforementioned medical school, described a scenario as stated by people suffering from this eating disorder. According to these individuals, they will have their dinners then have a cookie. They end up, however, eating up a whole pack. Not fully satisfied, many of them still find space for other snacks like salty foods and eat them alternately with other sweet desserts. These meals consist of high amounts calories and the eating habits cause obesity among people with BED.
BED: Why it occurs?
Combating this eating problem also include knowing the psychology and the reasons why this eating problem is observed among individuals. The University of North Carolina Eating Disorders Program’s director, Cynthia Bulik, PhD, observed pattern differences among patients. Some patients started to binge during childhood while others showed binging symptoms during their later years. According to the expert, most people who dieted to lose weight often showed signs of binging as the body reacts and rebels. It then compensates more than expected during the first binging occurrence. Binging will then occur more frequently after some time.
Bulik and her team conducted several studies revolving around this disorder’s occurrence. One result is that patients who are overweight due to BED have high chances of having relatives with the same disorder. On several instances, research shows that BED can be attributed to depression and anxiety. Genetics also play a role when it comes to presenting episodes of binging.
Several studies on the other hand put junk foods as a cause for binding. These researches cited that some individuals are prone to binge if they can’t resist junk foods. In a study conducted by Mary Boggiano, PhD, some lab rats given with Oreos are not particularly interested in the snack. However, some of these lab animals can’t stop eating the famous cookie. Boggiano claims that the pleasure receptors are also activated by junk foods and give the same reaction when animals are subjected to opiates. She stated that knowing the fact about junk foods and how it triggers binging reaction could help patients avoid these snacks, which also results to fully defeating the disorder.
Looking for professional’s aid
Throughout the research process, it shows that BED can be attributed to several disorders and can be controlled with professional help. Therapists came up with numerous approaches that combine several techniques to win against this increasingly prevalent problem. One of these therapies is cognitive behavior therapy. It follows a short therapy session concentrating on changing eating habits, ultimately resulting to dealing with BED.
In some treatment procedures, fitness experts come into the picture as aid in promoting healthier diet and eating patterns that help in breaking the binging cycle.
Joining Overeaters Anonymous is also another option, but is not a famous choice among people with BED. The organization follows a certain program starting by accepting the patient’s helplessness against food. Nevertheless, it is deemed as the most controversial option among experts. Experts emphasize that patients have power over their behaviors, which is contradicted by the organization’s therapy pattern.
Finally, psychiatrists may also offer antidepressants like Prozac among patients. Their studies show that people who dealt with their depression through medications are able to control their binging episodes. Other medications may be provided by an expert to treat other psychological issues that often come with BED.