Binge Eating Disorder: Causes, effects and counselling intervention

By Dr Helen E. Uzoekwe, Dr Grace Chinyere Nnadi, Dr EdnaNkechi Ofojebe & Dr Lilian C. Azara


 This article explored binge eating disorder. Binge eating is an addictive behaviour. An addictive behaviour is any particular behaviour that has become the major focus of a person’s life to the exclusion of other activities. Binge eating is disordered eating which consists of episodes of uncontrollable eating. This paper discusses addictive behaviour, binge eating, causes, symptoms, effects, general management and counselling therapies for the management of the disorder. The causes of this disorder among other things include the following factors: genetic, changes in brain, body size, body image and emotional trauma while some of the symptoms are: eating much faster than normal, eating until feeling uncomfortably full and eating a large amount of food when not hungry. Also, the effects of binge eating include obesity, emotional problems, poor self-image, feelings of shame and guilt. This article in particular highlighted some counselling therapies that seem effective in the management of binge eating disorder. Such counselling therapies include cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), Interpersonal psychotherapy (IP) and Dialectical behavioural therapy (DBT). The article makes some recommendations which include that parents should monitor their children for signs of binge eating disorder and make prompts referral to specialists where binge eating disorder is suspected.

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