Can’t stop eating? How you can overcome binge eating disorder.
Medically Reviewed By: Kimberly L Brownridge , LPC, NCC, BCPC Counsel The Mind, LLC
We all eat when we feel hungry and, on occasion, sometimes when we’re not. However, some people may overeat regularly. Even though it makes them feel bad both before and after consuming food, they may continue to engage in the behavior over time and can’t stop eating. Overeating may not be a choice. Instead, someone experiencing these symptoms may be dealing with binge eating disorder. If you think that you may have binge eating disorder, it can be overcome. In this guide, we will explore what symptoms come with this disorder and how you can start to recover from its effects.
What is binge eating disorder?
Binge eating disorder is a type of eating disorder in which a person will frequently eat large amounts of food at a time. Those who have binge eating disorder will often feel out of control when they take in excessive amounts of food and will often feel sad and ashamed of their behavior after they have engaged in it. However, binge eating disorder will often come with far more symptoms and effects than can be featured in a summary of the disorder. Here are some of the symptoms and effects that you may experience if you are dealing with binge eating disorder.
The physical and mental symptoms of binge eating disorder
Eating disorders will generally have both mental and physical symptoms experienced by those who have them. The symptoms associated with binge eating disorder include:
Feeling that one does not have control of oneself when they are consuming large quantities of food
Consuming far more than the average person would within a given period (Binge eating disorder) with binging behavior at least once a week for at least three months. Additionally, those who believe that they have binge eating disorder must experience at least three of the symptoms listed below this condition.)
Eating quicker than normal
Engaging in binging behavior despite not feeling hungry
Refusing to eat with others because one is embarrassed about the amount that they are eating
Feelings of shame, depression, or disgust after binge eating food
Eating until one feels full to the point of discomfort
Feeling distressed after binging
Additionally, binge eating disorder must not feature characteristics of other disorders. For example, those who have bulimia nervosa may engage in binging behavior. However, once they have realized that they have overeaten, they will attempt to expel it from their body through vomiting or taking laxatives. Individuals who have binge eating disorder will not attempt to remedy the situation. However, they can’t stop eating either, which will have different health consequences for those who binge but do not purge. We will look deeper into these complications later on in this guide.
The warning signs of a developing or ongoing binge eating disorder
Being able to spot certain behaviors that indicate a binge eating disorder can help you create awareness of your disorder and break free of it. Some of the warning signs to watch out for (or ask others about) include:
Empty containers and food wrappers may often evidence a significant decrease in food supplies in the home
Having a fear of eating with others or feeling uncomfortable where one is in a situation eating with others
Developing a habit of stealing or hoarding foods
Creating a schedule built around binging sessions or rituals
Withdrawing from friends and activities, either to binge or because of issues with self-perception and mood
Trying out various diets (often returning to binging behavior and trying out a new diet later on)
Having an obsession with one’s body and weight
Erratic eating behaviors include skipping meals, not eating on a schedule, replacing meals with snacks, and alternating between not eating at all or dieting
Eating large amounts of food privately
Having strange behaviors surrounding food and the act of consuming it
Frequent changes with weight gain and weight loss
Experiencing low self-esteem and confidence
Issues with focus and concentration
Issues with the stomach as a result of binge eating
Of course, certain behaviors may not be so easy to spot if we are looking for them within ourselves. If you believe you may have binge eating disorder, ask your friends and family if they have noticed certain behaviors on this list. This can help you receive further verification before you start seeking help for your eating disorder.**To be continued