Photograph by Adrian/Flickr
A recent study by the International Journal of Eating Disorders conducted in America found that Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is linked to some 44 diseases including migraines, lower back pain, polycystic ovarian syndrome and respiratory diseases such as asthma. “I’ve seen cases of obesity and diabetes caused by binge eating,” says Upasana Parasrampuria, holistic dietary consultant and founder of Mumbai-based Diet Tamasha, a health food service that provides innovative, natural food options and customises them to cater to allergies or health ailments.
BED, a condition defined by bouts eating too much in a short span of time, and is seen across age groups. “I know of young people who just stay up late and begin eating out of boredom,” says Parasrampuria, “The most common is working professionals who don’t eat on time so they wait until they’re really hungry and end up eating a lot in a really short time.” Eating quickly is also the cause for not feeling satiated and wanting to eat more. “Chewing slowly really helps as does spacing out your meals,” says Parasrampuria.
Exercise is another way to beat BED. “Exercise sets your metabolism right and ensures that you’re hungry at the right time,” says Parasrampuria. One of the important causes for BED is anxiety, stress and even depression, says the nutritionist, so talking about these things helps. “It’s a vicious cycle. You eat because you’re depressed and then you gain weight, lose confidence and continue to remain depressed. But the awareness about better eating and psychological issues is also growing in India.”
Eating alone also makes it easier to develop BED. “There is no embarrassment of being watched while you eat, so sometimes people end up eating more than they should,” says Parasrampuria, who recommends that those who believe that they suffer from BED talk about it and find help. “All of these diseases include BED is a fallout of the lifestyles that we lead today.”
Watch this video on why people binge eat