Santa Clara University

Wellness Center

Binge Eating

Binge Eating Disorder is a newly recognized eating disorder characterized by frequent episodes of uncontrolled overeating.


Binge Eating Disorder has several primary symptoms:

  • Frequent episodes of eating large quantities of food in short periods of time often secretly, without regard to feelings of "hunger" or "fullness."
  • Frequent feelings of being "out of control" during binges.
  • Eating large quantities of food rapidly, without really tasting the food.
  • Eating alone.
  • Feelings of shame, disgust, or guilt after a binge.
  • Binge eating disorder often results in some of the health risks associated with clinical obesity.

Health Consequences of Binge Eating Disorder:

  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels
  • Heart disease as a result of elevated triglyceride levels
  • Secondary diabetes
  • Gallbladder disease

About Binge Eating Disorder:

  • The prevalence of binge eating disorder in the general population is still being determined. Researchers estimate that approximately 25% of obese individuals suffer from frequent episodes of binge eating (Fairburn, 1998).
  • Binge eating disorder affects women slightly more often than men--estimates indicate that about 60% of people struggling with binge eating disorder are female, 40% are male (NIH, 1993).
  • People who struggle with binge eating disorder can be of normal or heavier than average weight.
  • Many people who suffer from binge eating disorder have a history of depression (NIH, 1993).
  • People struggling with binge eating disorder often express distress, shame, and guilt over their eating behaviors.

Help and full recovery are possible. You don't have to be alone with this any longer. Please seek professional help for yourself.


Santa Clara University Resources include:
12 Step Eating Disorder Support Group
Cowell Student Health Center **lab work, medical check-up, consultation
Counseling Center  **ongoing professional counseling and referrals
Wellness Center     **educational support, resources, consultation


National Eating Disorders Association


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