person binge eating

Addressing Binge Eating Habits: What Should You Consider?

There’s nothing as satisfying as eating a tub of ice cream right after a long day at work. While there’s no problem in eating at least a bag of potato chips or a tub of ice cream when you’re relaxing, overeating junk food (and food in general) can be a cause for concern. Many individuals usually binge eat as a coping mechanism if they are placed in a stressful situation.

Although food is an integral part of giving us much-needed calories and nutrients to go through our daily lives, overeating food can also result in health complications. Binge eating affects a good percentage of women around the world. As the name suggests, this is characterized by impulsively eating a lot of food in just a short period of time, with little to no control over the amount of food being eaten.

An individual (that’s not in a hurry) would regularly eat their regular food serving in an average span of 30 minutes, to at least an hour. But when an individual is binge eating, they can typically eat around two to three times what an average person would typically eat in a certain amount of time.

Many of these individuals don’t have any form of self-restraint when eating and only stop eating when they are already uncomfortably full from eating. Often, people who binge eat feel guilty right after overeating. But what most people don’t realize is that binge eating is also an underlying symptom of psychological and lifestyle problems.

But what makes binge eating a problematic behavior? What can you do about this habit? Here are some important ways of addressing binge eating and living a more healthy lifestyle.

How Do You Know if Someone Is Binge Eating?

But before getting into some ways of addressing binge eating, let’s first understand the individuals usually affected by this condition. Most of the time, they have the following behavior:

  • Eating a large amount of food that is double the amount required for dietary intake.
  • They can’t stop eating until everything is consumed, and they are already unhealthily full.
  • A deep sense of embarrassment and regret after eating a lot.
  • Finding difficulty in losing weight, as compared with other individuals that already have weight problems.

Outpatient Programs

First and foremost, one of the guaranteed ways of treating eating disorders like binge eating is by acknowledging that there is a problem that needs to be solved in the first place. Many organizations advocate outpatient programs since this can help patients internalize and hone recovery skills.

These programs can help patients regulate their eating habits. Don’t have much time for these programs? You won’t have to worry since reliable residential treatments for eating disorders can help anyone transition towards a better lifestyle.

woman in therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Another tried and tested way of addressing this habit is by directly addressing psychological issues through therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps individuals with a history of binge eating. This can assist in addressing negative feelings and helping with having a healthier outlook about body image while also controlling problematic behavior.

Medication

Last but not least, one of the most effective ways of treating this disorder is through medication. Many types of medications can help manage psychological triggers to binge eating and reduce physiological symptoms. One of the more prevalent medications comes in topiramate, which is often used for seizures. It’s still important to note that many of these medications have side effects, such as not concentrating and dizziness.

Some medical experts would say that since mental health issues like depression are triggers, taking antidepressants can aid in this situation. Remember: certain chemicals in our brain have a significant effect on mood.

Binge eating is one of the more common eating disorders. Although many people like to eat as a form of celebration and maintaining a balanced diet, binge eating can be problematic and should be addressed as soon as possible. If you think that you are suffering from this condition, many medical professionals can help treat it. You might want to consider getting help from a dietitian that can provide you with a healthier meal plan and a more well-rounded diet.

Still, it’s crucial to be mindful that the only person that can help address this is yourself. Although you can always seek professional help, the first step towards making key lifestyle changes is by acknowledging that you have a problem that needs to be addressed. Talking to a psychiatrist is also a great way of identifying any psychological and social problems that you might have. Whatever the situation might be, living a healthy lifestyle through a versatile diet and healthier practices can go a long way.

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