People with Binge Eating Disorder (BED) may face a difficult time in being diagnosed properly. The symptoms are very similar to those suffering from bulimia and compulsive over eating disorder.
Similar to bulimics and compulsive over eaters, people with BED will periodically go on binges where they will consume and ingest a large amount of food in a characteristically short time, usually less than 2 hours. This is an uncontrollable feeding where they will eat until it is uncomfortable and sometimes even painful.
Usually, people with BED will be above average in weight, sometimes very overweight, and they tend to have a very difficult time losing the excess weight and have a hard time maintaining a healthy weight.
Similar to compulsive over eaters, Binge Eaters do not purge after a binging episode.
Binge Eaters, like the other disorders, use their eating habits as a way to hide from their feelings. For many, coping with the daily stresses and problems that are occurring in their lives are too much for them and they feel a need to fill the void that is inside of them. For some, it is an attempt to substitute food for the acceptance and affection that they crave, that they feel is not present in their lives.
They may use their behaviors as a way to push others away, a subconscious behavior that will show people who are watching them that they have no self-confidence, no self-esteem, and is a cry for help. Sadly, it is usually a “silent” cry that many people just do not hear, sometimes due to lack of knowledge about the eating disorders and sometimes because people with eating disorders are VERY good about hiding their need for help. In many instances, it is a very secretive disorder.
Like compulsive over eaters, people with BED are also at risk for heart attacks, cholesterol and high blood pressure problems, kidney diseases, arthritis, and strokes. These are some very serious health issues that many Binge Eaters never even consider.
If you, or someone you know, has Binge Eating Disorder or another Eating Disorder, please get the information you need to lead you to a healing period in your life. Talk about your issues with someone you trust (it could be anyone!) and start taking steps to eliminate these unhealthy behaviors and habits from your life. These disorders are completely treatable, but the longer you stay with your unhealthy eating habits, the worse the health effects down the road can be. Get help now.