Binge eating disorder is more common than you would imagine. It affects a large number of people and is the most common disorder in the United States. Studies have shown that it affects 1.6% of adolescents, 2% of adult males and 3% of the women in the country.
Binge eating disorder has been listed as a diagnosable eating disorder as of 2013. This is significant because under this classification BED will now be covered by medical insurance. Let’s take a closer look at BED to find out more.
Unhealthy Eating Habits
BED is characterized by frequent episodes of eating large quantities of food, often to the point of feeling discomfort; there is no attempt to counter the binge with purging, fortunately. The person experiences a loss of control during the BED episode and can experience shame, disgust and guilt after the episode ends. BED usually occurs in adolescence or early adulthood and the episode happens so fast that the person barely remembers what they ate or how much. The episode provides comfort a brief period before disgust and self-loathing sets in.
There are many reasons BED can affect a person and this includes the person’s genetic make-up, emotions and experiences. Cultural and social factors also play a part in this. For instance, the need to be thin in order to socially acceptable and the unwise and unhealthy habit of some parents to reward and punish children with food, play a significant role in the acquisition of the condition.
Studies have also shown that depression is linked to BED as also people with impulse control problems. Other psychological factors like low self-esteem and loneliness can also be causes. Some ways to help someone with BED are to get them to seek help for the condition, be supportive and avoid making them feel bad by criticizing them or offering advice. You could also help the situation by setting a healthy example with your own eating habits and remember never to body shame anyone.