Binge eating disorder (BED) is a type of eating disorder that has now been officially recognized. The condition affects nearly 2 percent of people worldwide and can lead to additional health problems linked to a poor diet, such as high cholesterol levels and diabetes.

Binge eating disorder can be part of bulimia nervosa . And these two things are classified as mental disorders because they are generally associated with other psychological conditions, such as anxiety or depression. However, there are some things that distinguish the two, know the following review! 

This is the difference between binge eating disorder and bulimia

BED is generally defined as eating more than the normative amount of food over a period of time. Those who experience binge eating disorder also often lose control when eating. The characteristics of someone who has binge eating are:

  • Eat much faster than usual.
  • Eat until you are full but feel uncomfortable.
  • Eating large amounts without feeling hungry.
  • Eating alone out of shame.
  • Feelings of guilt or disgust with oneself.

People with BED often experience feelings of extreme unhappiness and depression because of their overeating, body shape, and weight. 

Another important characteristic is not taking action to “take out” the food. This means that, unlike bulimia, people with BED don’t vomit, take laxatives, or exercise excessively to try and ward off binge eating episodes. 

However, not all bulimics have to involve physical cleansing. They can make up for their overeating by fasting, exercising excessively, or going on a strict diet.

Causes of Bulimia and Binge Eating Disorder

Bulimia and binge eating disorder have no known cause. However, there are several factors that can affect its development. People with mental health conditions or distorted views are at a higher risk.

The same is true for people with a strong need to meet social expectations and norms. Those who are heavily influenced by the media may also be at risk. Other factors include:

  • anger problem,
  • Depression,
  • Perfectionist,
  • Impulsive,
  • Past traumatic events.

Some research suggests that bulimia can also be inherited, or it can be caused by a lack of serotonin in the brain. With binge eating, there are indications that people with BED may have changes in brain structure that result in heightened responses to food and a lack of self-control.

People with binge eating are also often associated with trauma or past habits. This disorder can occur in those who have often eaten a lot since childhood and teenage years.

Nearly 80 percent of people with BED have at least one other psychological disorder, such as a phobia, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), bipolar disorder, anxiety, or substance abuse.

Treatment for Eating Disorders

The treatment plan for BED or bulimia depends on the cause and severity of the eating disorder, as well as the individual’s goals. Treatment targets overeating or overcoming an eating phobia, improving body image, mental health problems, or a combination of these.

Treatment options include cognitive behavioral therapy, interpersonal psychotherapy, dialectical behavior therapy, healthy weight therapy, and medication. This can be done individually or in groups. In some people, only one type of therapy may be needed, while others may need to try different combinations until they find the right one.

A medical or mental health professional can provide advice in selecting an individual treatment plan.