Binge eating disorder (BED) is caused by a complex combination of genetic, psychological and sociocultural factors.

The family tie to BED and food addictions
Approximately 95 percent of patients with BED had a parent with BED or substance abuse issues, which underscores the genetic influence and cause of this condition. There are also neurobiological components to loss-of-control eating behaviors and a complex set of hormones influence and determine hunger and satiety cues as well as how we feel, think and behave around food.

Psychological predispositions for BED
Psychological factors can also prime an individual to binge eat. Those most likely to struggle with BED tend to have:

Low self-esteem
Negative body image
Feelings of inadequacy and loneliness.
Binge eating disorder sufferers often struggle with co-occurring mood and anxiety disorders, have experienced some kind of trauma, or struggle to navigate developmental milestones and life changes.

A culture obsessed with body image
The larger cultural narrative around dieting, binge eating and obesity is a prominent sociocultural factor influencing the development of binge eating disorder.

Dieting and weight loss have become synonymous with “healthy living,” while other cultural messages suggest that we have 100 percent control over our eating and weight, or that willpower drives normal eating, weight loss and overall health.

This rhetoric fosters shame and embarrassment for individuals struggling with BED, many of whom are chronic dieters without weight loss success.

By: Eating Recovery Center
Title: Causes of Binge Eating Disorder (BED)
Sourced From:

Eating Disorders Counselor of Portland – Food Is Not The Enemy
1235 Southeast Division Street
(360) 726-4141

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