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What are the Effects of Overeating Disorder & How is it Treated?

Overeating disorder or binge eating disorder is a condition that must be dealt with care. It is important to know the causes and symptoms of overeating disorder. Knowing about the effects, complications and treatment of overeating disorder can help in dealing with in a better way.

What is Overeating Disorder?

Overeating is a disorder which affects both the physical and mental status of the person. This is also called as binge eating disorder. There is consumption of excess amount of food due to inability to stop due to loss of control. This can be seen in both men and women. The negative feeling leads the person to use food as the coping mechanism, which in turn becomes a vicious cycle leading to obesity.

What are the Effects of Overeating Disorder?

What are the Effects Of Overeating ?

Some of the effects of overeating are as given below:

  1. Weight gain and obesity: Excessive overeating leads to uncontrolled weight gain and obesity. These are some of the harmful effects of overeating as obesity also increases the risk of joint pains, depression and other health problems. It also affects the personality of the person. They lose their self-confidence and develop inferiority complex.
  2. Emotional distress: There is no feeling of satiety after the meal and it leads to more emotional distress. It can sometimes cause more irritation and mood swings as even after having excess food, it does not pacify or reduce the problem.
  3. Disturbed Relationships: The person develops eating disorder and this love for food replaces everything else in life including the relationships with friends and family.
  4. Health disorders: The effects of overeating can extend to increasing the risk of a variety of health disorders affecting the kidneys, liver and stomach. It can also lead to bad breath, body odor, lack of concentration, skin diseases like acne, high cholesterol and high blood sugar levels, acid reflux diseases.

What are the Complications of Overeating Disorder?

Owing to the effects of overeating, some of the possible complications of overeating disorder include:

What are the Causes of Overeating?

It being an emotional problem, different people have different eating patterns and ways of coping with stress. Hence, the causes of overeating may vary, but here are some of the commonest ones. Many people tend to overeat due to boredom or due to lack of specific aim. Some people eat just for the sake of eating, while some eat to improve their physical appearance. Some may indulge in binge eating while trying to follow a strict diet plan, which they cannot manage well. For many, the causes of overeating are a part of their coping strategies towards various emotions like anger, sadness, hurt, betrayal, heartbreak and disappointment.

Some of the commonest causes of overeating include

  • Genetic : Mutations or hormonal irregularities
  • Psychological : Depression, sadness, low self-esteem, body dissatisfaction
  • Social & cultural: traumatic situations, emotional eating.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Overeating Disorder?

While overeating may look like a simple phenomenon, it does show itself with a typical presentation. Some of the signs and symptoms of overeating disorder include

  • Eating even if the stomach is full
  • Inability to stop eating
  • Stocking of food to eat later
  • Gorging food when alone
  • Stress relieved only by eating food
  • Feeling of numbness while eating
  • No satiety experience
  • Craving for foods even after a hearty meal
  • Feeling the need to eat when watching television or sitting idle

What is the Treatment for Overeating Disorder?

The treatment for overeating disorder is provided by psychiatrists, nutritionists, therapists can help the persons overcome the binge eating disorder.

The other methods include:

  1. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): This therapy helps the individuals understand the influences of the feelings and thoughts over food.
  2. Interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT): This therapy focuses on the relationships of the individual with the family members and peers.
  3. Dialectical Behavior therapy (DBT): This therapy helps the individuals overcome the feelings of stress and negative emotions.

The group therapy sessions also help the individuals overcome binge eating disorder. This is mainly conducted by eating disorder therapist.

Overeating disorder can be harmful in many ways and must be avoided by all means or treated appropriately. Eating consciously and healthy food is more important to have a healthy body in a healthy mind.


  1. Mayo Clinic – “Binge-eating disorder” (https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/binge-eating-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20353627)
  2. National Eating Disorders Association – “Binge Eating Disorder” (https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/learn/by-eating-disorder/bed)

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 22, 2023

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