Binge Eating: Joy of Life or A Disease
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Who would have thought that binge-eating may not be just extreme hunger, it is a silent disorder which leave untreated will be a serious disease. Therefore, you should be aware of it before it’s too late.
Binge Eating Disorder: (BED)
Excessive eating or Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is caused by overly eating while feeling out of control to stop or eating when you’re not hungry. More importantly, you will eat until you’re uncomfortably full after which you will be upset about your behavior. Interestingly, the cause of binge eating is unknown, but it can happen to anyone at any age.
Signs of Binge Eating
- Eating unusually large amounts of food
- Uncontrollable eating
- Compulsive eating or eating uncontrollably
- Eating very fast
- Hording food
- Eating consistently with or without hunger
- Eating alone out of shame
- Feeling guilty, upset, sad, disgusted and blame yourself about your eating
- Binge eating continuously for over 3 months
Health Issues from Binge Eating
Binge eater has a high risk of chronic disease such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, etc. It also affects digestive system, for example:
- Flatulence from overeating. Your stomach has to work longer and create more gas causing pain and distention. In the long-run it can cause ulcer and inflammation in your stomach.
- Indigestion from non-stop eating. This causes upset stomach and uncomfortable feeling around your chest, painful upper abdomen, burning sensation. Your digestive system may not work properly. In severe cases, there may be gastrointestinal bleeding, esophageal stricture, and gastric outlet obstruction.
- Acid Reflux or GERD. You are at risk of having GERD If you eat excessively and go to bed right away as your stomach acid will flow back into esophagus. If the condition becomes severely chronic, it may lead to ulcer in the esophagus and even a risk of cancer, although in low numbers.
- Diarrhea from excessive eating. Eating too many things which cause upset gastrointestinal tract resulted in diarrhea.
Treatment for Binge Eating
Doctor will ask for your health history, detail physical checkup before treatment which involves psychotherapy and medication. This requires time for gradual adjustments. Each patient will have different treatment methods depending on their cause and health risks.
How to Prevent Binge Eating
- Avoid stress
- Get enough rest
- Regular exercise
- Consult and follow doctor’s advice
Excessive eating once in a while on special occasions is not necessarily binge eating. But if you have excessive eating once a week for 3 consecutive months, you should pay attention and get examination for further treatment before it becomes chronic and severe.