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Treatment To Cure Binge Eating Disorder: Cognitive Therapy

Last updated on July 11, 2020

So you feel uncomfortably full and have just searched for a Binge Eating Treatments related to how to cure binge eating disorder.


Seriously. The “searching for how to cure binge eating disorder ” phase is an important step and you’re in the right place.

Today I’ll be reviewing the basics of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and how CBT can be useful to treat binge eating disorders. Here’s what we’ll cover:

  • CBT Overview
  • Phases of CBT
  • When CBT is your best treatment option
  • CBT Practical Example

And before you read any further, please note that I do have a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology. I’m not some crazy person! I also did an overview of 3 major therapies for treating binge eating you can read here.

How to cure binge eating disorder – A Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Overview

CBT is based on the premise that thoughts, feelings and actions are intertwined and can be “reprogrammed” for different outcomes.

You know the old yoga saying that your mind and body are connected?

Well, that’s true.

And this type of therapy focuses on the mind aspect of it.

But don’t other therapy treatments focus binge eating too?

Yes, but this type of therapy is different than other therapies for several reasons.

stress eating disorder
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is great for getting rid of obsessive thoughts and learning how to relate to your thoughts differently.

First, in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy the focus is on you, the individual.

I believe this treatment modality is useful because of the secretive nature of binge eating.

Dealing with an individual is easier to manage when there are elements of secrecy.

Other the other hand, there are other therapies that focus on group dynamics or family dynamics.

While these treatment options can be great for children, especially if you see patterns of compulsive eating in children, if you are a regular adult with disordered eating patterns, I would recommend a CBD approach.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is also focused in the present moment, and has very specific steps and techniques.

Other therapies may explore past or future, or be more vague in their approach.

how to stop thinking about food
CBD gives you specific steps to relate to your thoughts differently.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Phases

CBT has three phases of treatment – the behavioral phase, cognitive phase and maintenance and relapse phase. You can read this article here for more in-depth information.

In the Behavioral phase we:

1. Talk in depth about perfectionist behaviors associated with BED such as episodic binge eating and subsequent behaviors.

These always result from guilt or shame and are entirely predictable!

2. We start learning about the cycle of deprivation and some very basics about meal preparation, nutrition, and eating regularly.

3. Then we start practicing and learning self-care skills. Developing coping strategies for managing negative emotions that provoke episodic binge behaviors.

Distraction, prolonging urges and thought stopping are some of the skills taught to cope with overwhelming urges.

Then there is the Cognitive Phase:

In this phase, this is where the reprogramming techniques are introduced.

Basically you take a bad thought and make the thought a good thought.

This skill is deeply useful to have in life.

Practical outcomes of this approach are:

4. Improving your body image by challenging perfectionism
5. Learn to set appropriate boundaries in relationships.
6. Become more confident.

Cognitive Therapy Techniques

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Last but not least, do you have a problem with overeating or emotional eating?

If so, it's important to learn about Binge Eating Disorder. This disease is often overlooked and not taken seriously but there are horrible health consequences such as:

  • weight gain
  • obsessive thinking
  • fatigue
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • low self esteem
  • heart problems

Take this 8 question quick quiz if you can't stop thinking about food or are struggling with overeating or emotional eating. 

You may have Binge Eating Disorder which is very serious but also treatable!

The sooner you know what's going on in your body the better off you'll be. Just take this short quiz now and find out for sure if that's what might be happening to you!

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