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Eating Disorders

Eating disorders belong to the group of psychosomatic disorders with addictive nature. The spectrum of eating disorders includes Anorexia nervosa, Bulimia nervosa, as well as binge eating disorder (BED).

The transition from a disordered eating behaviour to a pathological eating disorder can take months to years. Affected people often try to hide or trivialise their behaviour. Bulimia, for instance, is characterized by the uncontrolled intake of loads of high caloric food (binge eating) and the subsequent attempt to undo the binge eating by self-induced vomiting or other compensatory measures like following a strict diet or fasting, misuse of laxatives, dewatering agents, and/or exessive physical activity.

People suffering from Binge-Eating-Disorder (BED) frequently take up huge amounts of food during binge eating which they cannot control. In contrast to Bulimia no countermeasures (self-induced vomiting, laxatives etc.) are undertaken by the affected person. The missing compensative behaviour causes affected people to become overweight or obese. Contrary to other eating disorders like Bulimia nervosa, the portion of BED affected men is a third of all affected people. A consequence of this eating disorder is shame and retraction.

Screening questions

  • Are you familiar with repeated episodes of "binge-eating"?
  • Do you tend to regularly exhibit inadequate behaviour like self-induced vomiting, strict dieting or fasting, abuse of laxatives, dewatering agents, enema, and/or extensive physical activity to avoid weight gain?
  • Do you eat amounts of food which are clearly larger than amounts most people would eat during a similar, short period of time (e.g. during a two-hour period) and under similar conditions?
  • Do you lose controll during such periods of intense eating like for example not being able to stop eating or not being able to choose which type or amount of food take up?
  • Do you eat alone because you are ashamed of the amount you take up?


Univ.-Prof. Dr.rer.nat.

Anne Schienle

Phone:+43 316 380 - 5086

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