According to the DSM-5 the criteria for Binge Eating Disorder are:
– Recurrent episodes of binge eating. An episode of binge eating is characterized by both of the following:
– Eating, in a discrete period of time (for example, within any 2-hour period), an amount of food that is definitely larger than most people would eat in a similar period of time under similar circumstances
– A sense of lack of control over eating during the episode (for example, a feeling that one cannot stop eating or control what or how much one is eating)
– The binge-eating episodes are associated with three (or more) of the following:
◦ Eating much more rapidly than normal
◦ Eating until feeling uncomfortably full
◦ Eating large amounts of food when not feeling physically hungry
◦ Eating alone because of feeling embarrassed by how much one is eating
◦ Feeling disgusted with oneself, depressed, or very guilty afterwards
– Marked distress regarding binge eating is present.
The binge eating occurs, on average, at least once a week for three months.
The binge eating is not associated with the recurrent use of inappropriate compensatory behavior (for example, purging) and does not occur exclusively during the course Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, or Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder.
Signs and Symptoms of Binge Eating Disorder (BED):
Binge Eating Disorder is similar to Bulimia Nervosa without the purging behaviors. It involves eating an objectively large amount of food in a short period of time, with the feeling of a loss of control over eating. The person with binge eating disorder feels compelled to eat large amounts of food despite a lack of physical hunger. They typically eat until they feel uncomfortably full. During a binge, food is eaten much more rapidly than normal. Hiding food and eating in secret is common. People with BED suffer from embarrassment, and feel disgusted, guilty and depressed after a binge. They may be normal weight, overweight, or obese, and suffer from significant weight fluctuations. Binge eating disorder creates a great deal of shame and guilt and frequently causes low self-esteem. People with BED can experience high levels of anxiety and depression. More men suffer from BED than from Anorexia or Bulimia.
Physical Problems that Develop as Binge Eating Progresses:
The person suffering from Binge Eating Disorder may become overweight or obese, and risk developing type II diabetes. Increased blood pressure, heart disease, joint pain, sleep apnea, and gastrointestinal problems may result from the weight gain.