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Is Binge Eating A Sign Of Bipolar

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According To The Mayo Clinic Symptoms Of Bulimia May Include:

Bipolar Disorder and Binge Eating
  • Being preoccupied with your body shape and weight or living in fear of gaining weight
  • Repeatedly eating unusually large quantities of food in one sitting, especially foods the person would normally avoid
  • Feeling a loss of control during bingeing
  • Forcing yourself to vomit or exercising too much to keep from gaining weight after bingeing
  • Using laxatives, diuretics or enemas after eating when theyre not needed
  • Fasting, restricting calories, or avoiding certain foods between binges
  • Using dietary supplements or herbal products excessively for weight loss
  • Strict dieting or fasting after binge eating
  • Not wanting to eat in public or in front of others
  • Going to the bathroom right after eating, during meals or for long periods of time
  • Excessive exercise

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Behavioral Symptoms Of Binge Eating And Compulsive Overeating

  • Inability to stop eating or control what youre eating.
  • Rapidly eating large amounts of food.
  • Eating even when youre full.
  • Hiding or stockpiling food to eat later in secret.
  • Eating normally around others, but gorging when youre alone.
  • Eating continuously throughout the day, with no planned mealtimes.

Help Someone With Symptoms

Provide encouragement or support if you know someone or a family member who is showing some symptoms of binge eating disorder. Find a mental help provider for an appointment to reverse the causes and effects of binge eating behavior. A person with a binge-eating disorder may become an expert at hiding behavior, making it hard for others to detect the problem.

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According To The Mayo Clinic Common Binge Eating Disorder Signs Include:

  • Eating unusually large amounts of food in a specific amount of time
  • Feeling that your eating behavior is out of control
  • Eating even when youre full or not hungry
  • Eating rapidly during binge episodes
  • Eating until youre uncomfortably full
  • Frequently eating alone or in secret
  • Feeling depressed, disgusted, ashamed, guilty or upset about your eating
  • Frequently dieting, possibly without weight loss

Individuals with eating disorders are experts in hiding their behavior. Its important to note that this is a mental health diagnosis that deserves serious attention.

Tips To Improve Treatment Outcomes

Binge Eating Disorder

These are some strategies that can help you reduce binge eating and improve treatment outcomes:

If you or a loved one are coping with an eating disorder, contact the National Eating Disorders Association Helpline for support at 1-800-931-2237.

For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database.

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How To Help Someone With An Eating Disorder

If a friend or relative has an eating disorder, such as , orbinge eating disorder, you will probably want to do everything you can to help them recover.

Youre already doing a great job by finding out more about eating disorders and how to try to support them it shows you care and helps you understand how they might be feeling.

Getting professional help from a doctor, practice nurse, or a school or college nurse will give your friend or relative the best chance of getting better. But this can be one of the most difficult steps for someone living with an eating disorder, so try to encourage them to seek help or offer to go along with them.

You can support them in other ways, too:

  • Keep trying to include them they may not want to go out or join in with activities, but keep trying to talk to them and ask them along, just like before. Even if they do not join in, they will still like to be asked. It will make them feel valued as a person.
  • Try to build up their self-esteem perhaps by telling them what a great person they are and how much you appreciate having them in your life.
  • Give your time, listen to themand try not to give advice or criticise this can be tough when you do not agree with what they say about themselves and what they eat. Remember, you do not have to know all the answers. Just making sure they know youre there for them is whats important. This is especially true when it feels like your friend or relative is rejecting your friendship, help and support.

Behavioral Weight Loss Programs For Binge Eating Disorder

Many people with binge-eating disorder have a history of failed attempts to lose weight on their own. But, before incorporating a weight loss program, talk to your doctor for guidance and additional recommendations. Ensure that the disorder is treated, because dieting may trigger more binge-eating episodes, making weight loss less successful.

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Binge Eating Disorder Statistics

  • 5% of American women have BED.
  • 2% of American men have BED.
  • 6% of American adolescents have BED.
  • Binge eating disorder is 3 times more common than anorexia and bulimia.
  • Approximately 5% of individuals with BED will die from health complications of the disorder.
  • Binge eating disorder occurs in people of ALL sizes .

Mood Disorders Encompass A Broad Spectrum Of Diagnoses Characterized By A Difficulty Regulating Ones Mood Similar To Eating Disorders Mood Disorders Have Many Causes Including Chemical Imbalances In The Brain Trauma And Genetics Bipolar Disorder Is A Type Of Mood Disorder That Commonly Co

Compulsive Overeating or Binge eating disorder, Causes, Signs and Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment.

Eating disorders are often distressing and difficult to treat on their own, let alone when they are accompanied by a coexisting mental condition. Unfortunately, many individuals with eating disorders also experience comorbid conditions such as substance abuse disorder, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Recent research has also shown a connection between eating disorders and bipolar disorder. The link between bipolar disorder and eating disorders is complex and not entirely understood. Treating these disorders concurrently can be especially difficult.

Bipolar disorder is a mental illness that is characterized by intense shifts in mood. Individuals with bipolar disorder can experience periods of extreme joy and energy followed by stretches of deep sadness and fatigue. In order to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder, the individual must experience either mania or hypomania , and may or may not experience depressive episodes. However, on average, people with bipolar disorder tend to spend more time in depressive states than in manic states. Medications such as mood stabilizersand antipsychotics can greatly reduce the severity of mood swings. Up to 4% of Americans experience bipolardisorder during their lifetime .

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This post was written by BALANCE Blog Intern, Sadie Grant.

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Signs Of Binge Eating Disorder

Binge eating disorder is a serious eating disorder in which you frequently consume unusually large amounts of food and feel unable to stop eating. It affects almost 2% of people worldwide. Binge eating disorder can cause additional health issues linked to diet, diabetes, and high cholesterol levels.

Eating disorders are not about food alone as it is also considered psychiatric disorders. People typically develop them as a way of dealing with a deeper issue or another psychological condition, such as anxiety or depression. Almost everyone overeats on occasion, but for some people, excessive overeating feels out of control. This becomes a regular occurrence that crosses the line to binge-eating disorder.

Treatment For Bipolar Disorder And Bulimia Nervosa

Antipsychotic medications such as ziprasidone and mood stabilizers such as lithium are the first-line medication approaches to treating bipolar disorder however, these medications have not been proven to be effective in treating bulimia nervosa. Lithium has been in trial studies for the treatment of eating disorders and bipolar disorder and has been shown to improve symptoms in these co-occurring disorders however it is currently not used in clinical practice due to the lack of research and more significant trials. Although some anti-depressants have been known to be effective in treating bulimia nervosa, they are contraindicated in bipolar disorder because they are known to predispose the individual to acute stages of mania. As a result, co-occurring bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder are best managed with psychotherapy approaches such as cognitive behavior therapy combined with careful medication management that is closely monitored by a psychiatrist.

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Skip Topics About Weight Body Image And Appearance

You might be tempted to say positive comments about her weight or body image as you think that it can make her feel good. But such comments that you think are harmless can trigger her self-doubt and shame. Dont try to flatter her with things like Youve lost weight or Youre not fat, are you sure you have an eating disorder? Stay away from topics that will make her feel bad about her body.

Identify Your Triggers With A Food And Mood Diary


One of the best ways to identify the patterns behind your binge eating is to keep track with a food and mood diary. Every time you overeat or feel compelled to reach for your version of comfort food Kryptonite, take a moment to figure out what triggered the urge. If you backtrack, youll usually find an upsetting event that kicked off the binge.

Write it all down in your food and mood diary: what you ate , what happened to upset you, how you felt before you ate, what you felt as you were eating, and how you felt afterward. Over time, youll see a pattern emerge.

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Eating Disorders Occurred In More Severe Cases Of Bipolar Disorder

Those with an eating disorder were more often women than men, and they tended to have a more severe case of bipolar disorder than the others. They experienced more mixed episodes, more prior episodes, more rapid cycling, and more suicide attempts. They were also more likely to have a family history of mood disorders or substance abuse.

Dr. Susan L. McElroy of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine led the study with her colleagues. She commented:

Substantial clinical and community data indicate that bipolar disorder co-occurs with substance use, anxiety, and impulse control disorders, and that these comorbidities are associated with negative effects on the course, outcome, and treatment response of bipolar disorder. Another comorbidity which has received far less systematic attention but which may also be important is that between bipolar disorder and eating disorders.

Tip : Support Yourself With Healthy Lifestyle Habits

When youre physically strong, relaxed, and well rested, youre better able to handle the curveballs that life inevitably throws your way. But when youre already exhausted and overwhelmed, any little hiccup has the potential to send you off the rails and straight toward the refrigerator. Exercise, sleep, and other healthy lifestyle habits will help you get through difficult times without binge eating.

Make time for regular exercise. Physical activity does wonders for your mood and your energy levels, and its also a powerful stress reducer. The natural mood-boosting effects of can help put a stop to emotional eating.

Get enough sleep every night. When you dont get the sleep you need, your body craves sugary foods that will give you a quick energy boost. Sleep deprivation may even trigger food addiction. Getting plenty of rest will help with appetite control and reduce food cravings, and support your mood.

Connect with others. Dont underestimate the importance of close relationships and social activities. Youre more likely to succumb to binge eating triggers if you lack a solid support network. Talking helps, even if its not with a professional.

Manage stress. One of the most important aspects of controlling binge eating is to find alternate ways to handle stress and other overwhelming feelings without using food. These may include meditating, using sensory relaxation strategies, and practicing simple breathing exercises.

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Diagnosis Of Binge Eating Disorder

To diagnose binge eating disorder or other eating disorders, a doctor will need to:

  • do a full physical examination
  • do blood tests
  • ask questions about your health, including your emotional health and wellbeing, medical history and lifestyle.

Understanding the warning signs and symptoms and seeking help as soon as possible will help your recovery.

Manic Phase Of Bipolar Disorder

Patients with Bipolar have Higher Rate of Binge Eating

Signs and symptoms as a result of the manic or hypomanic phase of bipolar disorder can include:

  • Euphoria
  • Impulsive spending and ill-illadvised financial choices
  • Greatly increased ambition
  • Thoughtless or precarious use of drugs or alcohol
  • Frequent missing work or school
  • Delusions from reality
  • Lower performance at work or school

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How Is It Diagnosed And Treated

Doctors use various techniques to determine whether a patient has a binge eating disorder. Doctors will also perform a full physical examination to rule out other disorders and to identify secondary health problems that may occur with eating disorders. In most cases, they will look for the following signs:

  • Frequent episodes of eating abnormally large amounts of food
  • Eating much more rapidly than usual.
  • Eating large amounts of food, even when not physically hungry.
  • Feelings of disgust, depression, or guilt after overeating
  • Frequently feeling unable to control what or how much is being eaten
  • Eating until uncomfortably full
  • Eating alone because of embarrassment at quantity of food the patient is eating

Most people who have a Binge Eating Disorder often hide it from family and friends, and have tried unsuccessfully to control it on their own.

Treatment can include:

  • Medications as appropriate: antidepressants, or topiramate
  • Psychotherapy
  • Gastrointestinal surgery for weight loss in extreme cases
  • Self-Help Groups like Overeaters Anonymous

What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Binge Eating Disorder

Binge eaters usually are unhappy about their weight and many feel .

Someone whos binge eating also might:

  • eat a lot of food quickly
  • hide food containers or wrappers in their room
  • have big changes in their weight
  • skip meals, eat at unusual times , and eat alone
  • have a history of eating in response to emotional stress

People who binge might have feelings that are common in many eating disorders, such as depression, anxiety, guilt, or shame. They may avoid school, work, or socializing with friends because theyre ashamed of their binge eating problem or changes in their body shape and weight.

When kids or teen binge eat, parents may first suspect a problem when large amounts of food go missing from the pantry or refrigerator.

Binge eating is different from bulimia, another eating disorder. People with bulimia binge eat, but try to make up for overeating by throwing up, using laxatives, or to lose weight.

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Bipolar Disorder And Eating Disorders

Individuals with bipolar disorder appear to be more likely than others to develop an eating disorder. Approximately 5.7 million American adults have bipolar disorder, a mental illness characterized by frequently changing moods that alternate between manic highs and depressive lows. Eating disorders affect about 4 percent of the population, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.

A study published online in the Journal of Affective Disorders in July of 2010 found that more than 14 percent of 875 bipolar patients surveyed also had an eating disorder. Binge-eating disorder was the most common with 77 patients, followed by bulimia nervosa with 42, and anorexia nervosa with 27.

Dealing With Guilt After Eating

Binge eating disorder: symptoms, triggers and treatments

And here it is, the number 1 most read article on Recovery Warriors. Its no surprise this article is about coping with guilt after eating. Because feeling guilty after eating only adds to more uncomfortable feelings, its important to learn how to interrupt the cycle of self-loathing and shame that is often experienced. This encouraging article offers insight, hope, and encouragement for everyone who is in the journey of recovering.

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Signs Of Anorexia Athletica Include:

  • Low energy levels or fatigue
  • Problems with concentration or focus
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Denying that excessive exercise is a problem
  • Enjoyment of sports and activity is diminished or non-existent
  • Obsessive thoughts and behaviors surrounding calories, body image, and weight
  • Excessive exercise

Athletes who suffer from this disease have a hard time admitting they need help and may also experience obsessive-compulsive tendencies. They also may be perfectionists or Type A personalities.

Emotional And Behavioral Signs And Symptoms May Include:

  • Preoccupation with food, which sometimes includes cooking elaborate meals for others but not eating them
  • Frequently skipping meals or refusing to eat
  • Denial of hunger or making excuses for not eating
  • Eating only a few certain safe foods, usually those low in fat and calories
  • Adopting rigid meal or eating rituals, such as spitting food out after chewing
  • Not wanting to eat in public
  • Lying about how much food has been eaten
  • Fear of gaining weight that may include repeated weighing or measuring the body
  • Frequent checking in the mirror for perceived flaws
  • Complaining about being fat or having parts of the body that are fat
  • Covering up in layers of clothing
  • Flat mood
  • Social withdrawal

Image by Riley Reed

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Bipolar Disorder And Self

Many people are familiar with the term self-medicating as it relates to mental illness. The concept is simple: the symptoms of the illness cause a person to suffer and in an attempt to alleviate that suffering they turn to . . . something.

Sadly, the stereotypical choice both in pop culture and in reality is drugs and alcohol. They are an easy choice to make, for obvious reasons. But food can be used to cope just as easily as illicit substances. Eating feels good and its easy. Certain foods are synonymous with happy feelings.

We have an entire category we refer to as comfort foods, usually carb-heavy items like macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, and so on. Carbohydrates fuel the production of serotonin, which makes us feel good. You can see the danger, there. Its the identical path of substance abuse, but more socially acceptable.

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