Binge abstinence is associated with reduced energy intake after treatment in patients with binge eating disorder and obesity

Robin M. Masheb, Lindsey M. Dorflinger, Barbara J. Rolls, Diane C. Mitchell, Carlos M. Grilo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Objective: Binge eating disorder (BED) is strongly associated with obesity and related medical and psychiatric morbidities. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) has consistently been shown to reduce binge eating frequency and improve psychological functioning, as well as to produce abstinence rates of roughly 50%. This study examined the relationship between binge abstinence and dietary and psychological outcomes after CBT for BED. Methods: Fifty adult patients with BED received 6-month treatments using a combination of CBT and dietary counseling. Trained interviewers conducted two 24-hour dietary recall interviews on randomly selected days at baseline and at 6 months. Results: Participants had significant reductions in energy, macronutrient, and sugar intake and an increase in fruit intake. They reported significant reductions in BMI and binge eating frequency (from mean = 14.24 to mean = 1.90 binge eating episodes during the previous 28 days), as well as improvements in psychological functioning. Those who became binge abstinent reported eating roughly 400 fewer calories per day and experienced greater improvements in psychological functioning than those who did not. Conclusions: Findings from this study suggest that individuals who achieve complete cessation from binge eating have significantly improved dietary and psychological outcomes that could potentially improve weight status, compared with those who continue to binge eat post-treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2491-2496
Number of pages6
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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