Food is a huge part of our lives. We need it to live, but sometimes eating can become an unhealthy obsession that overtakes our lives. If you are thinking about food all the time, eating compulsively or are preoccupied all the time about what you’re eating and how much of it, you know the impact it has on your every aspect of your life. Have you wondered if you have a binge eating disorder?

How are binge eating and overeating different?

Overeating is not the same as having a binge eating disorder. Binge eating is a common eating disorder characterized by eating excessive amounts of food while feeling a total loss of control. After the individual has binged, they often feel shame or guilt and sometimes hide the fact that they have binged.

Many times the disorder is linked to anxiety, depression or other mood disorders.  However,  if you find yourself overeating regularly, it doesn’t automatically mean that you have an eating disorder. It depends on how frequently you are binge eating if you feel a lack of control over yourself when eating, and how you are feeling after binges.

Not sure if you have a binge eating disorder? Examine your eating habits and ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you feel as if you have no control over your eating habits?
  • Do you feel regret, shame, or guilt after you overeat?
  • Do you eat large amounts of food in a short amount of time while experiencing a loss of control over yourself?
  • Do you eat when you’re not hungry?
  • Are you embarrassed about how much you eat and hide how much you eat?

Binge eating can cause a variety of physical health problems and mood disorders. In addition to gaining significant weight, people with binge eating disorders may also face complications such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes or asthma. It can also cause or intensify existing mood disorders such as depression and anxiety. Binge eating can devastate a person’s sense of self-worth, confidence, and self-esteem. If left untreated, a combination of these factors severely damages a person’s quality of life.

A young woman lying on her couch eating chocolate

Binge Eating vs. Overeating

Food is a huge part of our lives. We need it to live, but sometimes eating can become an unhealthy obsession that overtakes our lives. If you are thinking about food all the time, eating compulsively or are preoccupied all the time about what you’re eating and how much of it, you know the impact it has on your every aspect of your life. Have you wondered if you have a binge eating disorder?

How are binge eating and overeating different?

Overeating is not the same as having a binge eating disorder. Binge eating is a common eating disorder characterized by eating excessive amounts of food while feeling a total loss of control. After the individual has binged, they often feel shame or guilt, and sometimes hide the fact that they have binged.

Many times the disorder is linked to anxiety, depression or other mood disorders.  However,  if you find yourself overeating regularly, it doesn’t automatically mean that you have an eating disorder. It really depends on how frequently you are binge eating, if you feel a lack of control over yourself when you’re eating, and how you feeling after binges.

Not sure if you have a binge eating disorder? Examine your eating habits and ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you feel as if you have no control over your eating habits?
  • Do you feel regret, shame, or guilt after you overeat?
  • Do you eat large amounts of food in a short amount of time while experiencing a loss of control over yourself?
  • Do you eat when you’re not hungry?
  • Are you embarrassed about how much you eat and hide how much you eat?

Binge eating can cause a variety of physical health problems and mood disorders. In addition to gaining significant weight, people with binge eating disorders may also face complications such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes or asthma. It can also cause or intensify existing mood disorders such as depression and anxiety. Binge eating can devastate a person’s sense of self-worth, confidence and self-esteem. If left untreated, a combination of these factors severely damages a person’s quality of life.

I answered yes to some or all of these questions. What do I do?

The first step is to seek a medical professional who specializes in eating disorders. Talking to a professional about what issues you’re facing can help you break free from the cycle of binge eating and help put you back on the path of healthy living. There are a variety of treatment options including outpatient therapy/counseling, group counseling, or in-patient treatments at a specialized facility.

If you want help on your eating habits, want advice on how to lose weight, or are concerned that you have an eating disorder, contact our team of professionals at Weight Wise today.