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Binge Eating Psychologist

Binge eating doesn’t sound like something serious at first glance. After all, everyone is prone to indulge from time to time. While it’s not uncommon to overeat on special occasions, episodes of eating excessively with an experience of losing control may be ‘ binge eating’ and part of Binge Eating Disorder (BED). People with binge eating disorder can find it difficult to cope in their daily lives, struggle with their weight and body image, and experience low self-esteem.

While most people have heard of Bulimia and Anorexia, there is much less awareness of binge eating disorder. Psychology manual – Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) – only came to recognise the disorder in 1994 with the DSM-IV. Before then, binge eating was only considered a characteristic of Bulimia. Binge Eating Disorder has no obvious outward symptoms as with Bulimia and Anorexia, so it’s not as easy to notice in yourself or in loved ones.

How to Recognise Binge Eating Disorder in Yourself or a Loved One

Often times, people with this disorder will only binge in private. This can make it difficult to recognise in others, but you will be able to recognise Binge Eating Disorder in yourself. The following are signs that you may be struggling with Binge Eating Disorder:

  • Overeating occurs in regular sessions and may involve rituals or specific patterns, such as having to watch a specific show while eating or consuming snacks in a specific order
  • Binging is almost always followed by feelings of shame and/or guilt
  • There will likely be time periods of dieting or giving up “unhealthy” foods that may even be successful for a short while
  • The combination of binging and dieting can result in significant weight fluctuations

These are only a few of the signs of Binge Eating Disorder. It is a complex disorder that can look different depending on the individual. Contact our practice in Melbourne if you are concerned for yourself or a loved one.