Health Effects And Treatment Of Binge Eating Disorder

GinaMarie Guarino, LMHC

Health Effects And Treatment Of Binge Eating Disorder

If binge eating disorder is left untreated, it has the potential to have some devastating effects on the patient’s overall health. Binge eating disorder can either stem from or create serious mental health consequences. It will also cause significant medical consequences. These consequences can impact the affected person’s quality of life.

Consequences that can impact a person with binge eating disorder include:

Poor Mental Health

A person with binge eating disorder is at risk for suffering from a depressive or anxiety disorder. This is because a person with binge eating disorder may also suffer from:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Criticism from others
  • Negative self-talk
  • Behavioral changes
  • Personality changes.

These changes can cause the patient to:

  • Isolate from friends and family
  • Mask their emotions through aggression or anger
  • Develop a habit of self-harm, like cutting or overeating to punish him or herself.

Obesity and Diabetes

Binge eating disorder leads to weight gain and obesity. Weight gain and obesity increases the risk for type II diabetes. Type II diabetes develops when high food intake affects the level of insulin in the body. This makes sugar levels difficult to control. Type II diabetes has the potential to create devastating health consequences, like:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Permanent nerve damage
  • Kidney damage
  • Eye damage

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Binge Eating Disorder can develop into irritable bowel syndrome. Irritable bowel syndrome is a gastrointestinal disorder that causes:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Gas
  • Cramping
  • Bloat
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

Other Medical Issues

Binge eating disorder can lead to other serious medical consequences, like:

  • Kidney damage
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Vision problems


Binge Eating Disorder Treatment Options

Binge eating disorder is a difficult disorder to live with, but there is hope. Researchers have learned a great deal about what binge eating disorder is and how to treat it. From research, resources have become available to those who are struggling to control their binge eating.

The 3 main areas of treatment for binge eating disorder include:

1. Mental health treatment

Binge eating disorder is a mental health condition. This means that mental health counseling and treatment will be necessary for recovery. There are several different forms of therapy that are effective in the treatment of binge eating disorder.

Therapy options that are helpful in treating binge eating disorder include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
  • Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT)
  • Interpersonal therapy
  • Support programs, like group therapy and Eater’s Anonymous

2. Physical Health and Medical Treatment

It helps to consult a physician as well as seeking therapy. A physician can help to improve medical health and physical health. A primary doctor may prescribe medication to suppress appetite as the affected person learns healthier ways to cope. He or she will also address the medical consequences that have developed as a result of binge eating and weight gain.

3. Nutritional Counseling

Changes to diet and exercise will be crucial for recovery. It is important to learn how to make healthier food choices and control portions. Nutritional counseling helps to teach how binge eating affects quality of life. It will also teach eating and weight management skills that will prevent symptomatic behaviors.


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