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Do you ever binge? While we all sometimes overindulge, people with binge eating disorder experience a real loss of control over the way they eat and a lot of negative emotions and health problems from this loss of control.

Fortunately, binge eating disorder is a very treatable condition and if you even think you might suffer from the disorder you’d be wise to make an appointment with your doctor today to learn more about how you can start feeling a whole lot better in the very near future.

Not sure? Well, to start with, try taking this very quick self test to see whether you might meet the American Psychiatric Association’s diagnostic criteria for binge eating disorder.

Binge Eating Disorder Self Test

Based on the diagnostic criteria provided by the APA  for binge eating disorder’s proposed inclusion into the upcoming DSM-V.

1. Do you have frequently reoccurring episodes of binge eating that are characterized by:

  • Eating a very large amount of food in a brief period of time (for example, within 2 hours) - A very large amount of food is defined as an amount of food that is much larger than the amount most people would consume in a similar amount of time and under similar circumstances.
  • Feeling like you have lost control over your eating during binging episodes

2. When you binge eat, do 3 or more of the following statements match the way you feel or act

  • Feeling disgusted with yourself after you have finished your binge eating session
  • During a binge, eating much more quickly than you normally would
  • Eating beyond normal fullness, until you feel uncomfortably full
  • Eating a large amount of food during a binge, even when you are not actually physically hungry
  • Choosing to binge while alone because you feel embarrassed about your eating

3. Have you been binge eating for at least 3 months and, on average, do you binge once or more per week.

4. Are the following statements true? You do not purge after binging (force yourself to vomit, use laxatives etc.) nor do you engage in any other form of compensatory behavior (excessive exercise, for example). Your binging does not occur as a part of another eating disorder, such as anorexia, bulimia or avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder.1

If you answered yes to the 4 questions above then you meet the diagnostic criteria for a diagnosis of binge eating disorder.

Do You Need Help?

Eating disorders are the most dangerous of all mental health disorders and binge eating disorder is associated with:

  • Obesity
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • An increased risk of certain cancer
  • Gastrointestinal conditions
  • Arthritis
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Sleep apnea
  • Depression
  • Others 2

Binge eating disorder is a serious condition that can lead to a host of medical problems and a reduction in quality of life. Take action now if you think you’ve got binge eating disorder, but remember, a self test should never substitute for a professional evaluation and diagnosis. If after answering the above questions you think you might meet the diagnostic criteria for binge eating disorder you need to seek professional help for an expert diagnosis and for effective treatment advice.

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Page last updated Jun 24, 2012

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