Binge Eating Disorder Outpatient Treatment for Adults


Binge eating disorder is the least recognised and understood of the eating disorders, but also the most prevalent. It is hard to say exactly how many people are affected, especially as the problem is so poorly recognised, but some estimates suggest there are two or three times as many people with binge eating disorder (BED) as those with anorexia nervosa. BED affects people across all ages, male and female.

If an individual has BED, they must have binge eating disorder outpatient treatment for adults that is specifically designed for the condition, otherwise, their disorder will persist. A programme of weight reduction or a desire to stop bingeing will not be effective unless the underlying psychological issues are addressed.

In common with other people with eating disorders, individuals with BED are likely to experience high levels of guilt and shame around their condition. They may feel they are ‘greedy’ and lack self-control. People with BED can be overweight, sometimes severely so and may have other health issues related to their weight. Equally however, people with binge eating disorder can be within a normal weight range or only slightly overweight. Binge eating disorder is not the same as overeating.

Main symptoms of binge eating disorder

Broadly speaking, people with binge eating disorder will have the following main symptoms:

  • A regular, recurrent pattern of eating a very large amount of food in a single, short episode
  • Feelings of a complete loss of control and compulsion during the binge
  • Eating until uncomfortably full
  • Binges are triggered by difficult emotions, which will vary from one individual to another, but may be loneliness, anxiety and low self-esteem
  • Strong feelings of embarrassment, shame and guilt surrounding the binges

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5®) used worldwide by healthcare professionals in the diagnosis of eating disorders, to meet the criteria, binges should occur at least once a week for six months. However, clinicians should consider all symptoms and aspects in making a diagnosis.

About binge eating disorders treatment

What does binge eating disorders treatment involve?

Binge eating disorder outpatient treatment for adults involves seeing a professional (at Newbridge House, this will be our consultant clinical psychologist, Dr Matt Hutt) every week. This is a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) based approach, considering the relationship between thoughts, emotions and behaviour. Treatment programmes encourage people to understand what triggers a binge and how to manage the emotions and thoughts causing this response. Binge eating disorder outpatient treatment for adults usually involves keeping a diary or record of feelings and behaviour.

How long as the sessions?

Individual sessions with the consultant clinical psychologist last one hour. Sometimes, people find a support group helpful, combined with individual sessions, and the support group may last one hour and sometimes longer.

How long does the programme take?

Binge eating disorder outpatient treatment for adults typically consists of about 20 sessions, taking place each week, although there will be some individual variation.

Who is the therapist who would be treating me?

At Newbridge House, the programme for binge eating disorder outpatient treatment for adults is delivered by Dr Matt Hutt, a highly experienced consultant clinical psychologist. Dr Hutt has taught, researched and published extensively on the application of CBT to the treatment of eating disorders.

What are the benefits and end goals of treatment?

The principal aim of treatment is to end the harmful cycle of binge eating by helping you to manage the feelings and thoughts which have been triggering your cycle of binging. Treatment also aims to improve your well-being, by addressing this harmful cycle and the strong emotions around it. Treatment programmes will not necessarily produce weight loss (although this may be the case) and it is not primarily about healthy eating and weight control.

How to reach us

Car: Newbridge House is conveniently located close to a number of the main motorway networks, including the M6, M5 toll and the M42. Our unit is therefore easily reached from Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Leicestershire and Worcestershire as well as Birmingham and the West Midland conurbation.

Train: If you come by train to Birmingham New Street, Newbridge House is a 30-minute taxi drive from New Street (but please note this may take a lot longer during rush hour periods). Alternatively, you can get a train from New Street to Sutton Coldfield or Four Oaks train station (Four Oaks being closest) for a shorter taxi journey on to Newbridge.

*Eating disorders: recognition and treatment. Published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in May 2017