Despite the fact that binge eating disorder affects millions of Americans nationwide, it is an issue that is rarely talked about and frequently swept under the rug – along with similar disordered earing patterns such an anorexia and bulimia. These psychological disorders claim hundreds of lives on an annual basis, though many individuals who struggle with disordered eating will avoid seeking help based on deep-seated feelings of shame, or a fear of societal judgment and potential discrimination. Truth be told, many individuals who have no personal experience with eating disorders are quick to judge those that do – like substance dependency, food addiction may seem, to the unfamiliar, like a matter of nothing more than weak willpower and laziness. Those who suffer from binge eating disorder will frequently hear good-intentioned but hurtful comments from close friends and family members, urging them to simply ‘take control’ of their lives and stick to a diet or begin exercising. “Just don’t eat after 8 pm,” they might say. “It’s that easy.” “If it was really important to you, you would make more of an effort to stop.” “You just need to stop ordering pizza every night, get your lazy butt up off the couch, and get to the gym!” Of course, those who struggle with binge eating disorder know that it is not nearly so simple. Usually only outside help, such as that provided by inpatient treatment or Overeaters Anonymous, will make a profound and lasting impact.
What Is Binge Eating Disorder
Binge eating disorder is characterized by frequent bouts of compulsive overeating, during which individuals consume excessive quantities of food. During these bouts of binge eating, individuals likely feel a complete powerlessness and inability to stop despite negative consequences or signals from their bodies that they have consumed enough and are already full. In most cases, binge eating disorder will begin in late adolescence or early adulthood, and will continue on and progressively worsen until outside help is actively sought. Those who suffer from binge eating disorder will typically experience intense feelings of guilt, shame, and self-loathing after partaking in a binge, and because of this, suicidal ideations and suicide attempts are not uncommon amongst sufferers. Many who are afflicted with this particular disorder concurrently suffer from psychological conditions – thus it is pertinent that binge eaters who seek treatment actively look for dual diagnosis addiction treatment facilities or programs that will work to remedy both afflictions simultaneously.
Overeaters Anonymous and Other Methods of Recovery
Because binge eating disorder is so prevalent amongst women, many female-specific treatment programs will focus on eating disorders along with substance dependency issues or any other potential dual diagnosis disorders. While inpatient treatment is an ideal option for any individual suffering from a severe eating disorder, there are many other treatment options available. Overeaters Anonymous is a 12-step program focused on disordered eating – one that was originally established in 1960 and has since helped millions of men and women worldwide. Overeaters Anonymous is not a program limited to compulsive overeaters. Any individual who struggles with disordered eating patterns is welcome to attend meetings and become involved in the program. For more information on Overeaters Anonymous or for a list of inpatient treatment options in your immediate area, please contact Willow Place for Women today.