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5 Effects of Binge Eating on Your Body

Even if you try your hardest to maintain a healthy diet and get in regular exercise, sometimes it can be more difficult than others.  And binge eating only further complicates those efforts!  In fact, binge eating can have some serious negative effects on your body.  From causing too much bloating to making you feel sick the next day, binge eating can also wreck your metabolism and make it difficult for you to lose weight and keep it off in the future!

A Note on Binge Eating Disorder

Binge eating disorder is an eating disorder that is recognized medically throughout the world.  It affects roughly three to five percent of American women, and is more common than anorexia and bulimia.  Binge eating disorder is categorized by repeatedly eating food well past the point of feeling full.  While there isn’t any purging of the food typically, most who are affected by this might decide to fast or try out different diets.  Binge eating disorder is treatable with therapies, and by staying away from diets and learning to take hunger cues from your own body.


Fatigue and Lethargy

Those who binge eat might feel tired or sluggish after consuming a large amount of food.  The body does not need to continue to eat past the point of feeling full; it also does not require eating several large amounts of food in a single day.  Therefore, if you find yourself binge eating, you are likely to be tired, as your body needs to digest all of that food.  Think about how you might feel after a big Thanksgiving dinner – too full, exhausted, and in no way ready to do anything except sleep!


Heartburn and Indigestion

When you binge eat and consume too much food, your stomach might not be able to handle it, making you feel kind of queasy.  Whether you have an upset stomach, sour stomach, or too much acid buildup making its way up your esophagus, it can be a really uncomfortable day or two until your digestive system is able to calm back down.


Weight Gain

If you binge eat too many times, you might find yourself gaining weight.  Too much weight gain can lead to obesity, which can bring about a whole slew of medical problems, such as sleep apnea, heart disease, cancers, or diabetes.  The more you binge eat, the more weight you might find yourself putting on, which in turn can lead to complications such as those listed above, and more.  Binge eating can also have an effect on your metabolism, which can make it harder to lose weight in the future.  This is all surprisingly counterintuitive, since binge eating is a common response to excessive dieting!



There are links that show that those who binge eat regularly are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes in their lives.  This happens when you binge eat and your blood sugar spikes out of your control, and then drops again.  If you already have diabetes, binge eating can cause life threatening complications and be even more dangerous for you.


Depression and Anxiety

Depression and anxiety are common amongst those who binge eat.  Some people with depression and anxiety might turn to binge eating and food as a way of dealing with those mood issues, which usually make you feel even worse as time goes on.  Alternatively, some people can develop depression and/or anxiety in response to their binge eating behavior.  Treatment for depression and anxiety might make it easier to avoid binge eating in the future.


What to do About Binge Eating

While it isn’t a problem from time to time if you eat a little more than you should, it can become an issue if this overeating is excessive, or if you notice an unhealthy cycle developing.  If you find yourself engaging in binge eating, there are things that you can do to stop it before it becomes a problem.   First, recognize that you have an issue that needs to be dealt with.  Second, seek a therapist that specializes in eating disorders.  This therapist can help you get in touch with some of the root causes of your binge eating behavior, develop alternative coping strategies and also rule out anxiety and depression as core issues.


If you don’t want to wait and want to get control of your binge eating behavior NOW, be sure to check out my Binge Free For Life program!

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Dr. Candice Seti


California-licensed Clinical Psychologist, Certified Nutrition Coach, and Certified Personal Trainer

Dr. Candice Seti

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