Binge Eating


People with this condition have bouts of eating large amounts of food in a short period of time. They tend to select high calorie foods and binge in secret.  Unlike people with bulimia, they do not try to purge the food from their bodies afterward. This disorder tends to make people gain weight from eating too much. As their weight increases, they tend to binge more often.


People who have this disorder tend to be:

  • Excessively overweight
  • Distressed about this eating pattern
  • Depressed

Although this condition doesn't cause the types of problems that go with refusing to eat or self-induced vomiting or other types of purging, it does causes complications from obesity.

Causes and Risk Factors

Nearly half the people with this disorder are men. They tend to be adults rather than teens. This condition tends to affect people who are obese.


Losing weight using behavior therapy, even without directly addressing the binge eating, is the best treatment for this disorder. Other types of treatment, such as therapy, may make the binge eating occur less often, but don't always reduce body weight.

© 2000-2022 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
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