Binge eating disorder  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Binge eating disorder (BED) is the most common eating disorder in the United States affecting 3.5% of females and 2% of males and is prevalent in up to 30% of those seeking weight loss treatment. Although it is not yet classified as a separate eating disorder, it was first described in 1959 by psychiatrist and researcher Albert Stunkard as "Night Eating Syndrome" (NES), and the term "Binge Eating Disorder" was coined to describe the same binging-type eating behavior without the exclusive nocturnal component. BED usually leads to obesity although it can occur in normal weight individuals. There may be a genetic inheritance factor involved in BED independent of other obesity risks and there is also a higher incidence of psychiatric comorbidity, with the percentage of individuals with BED and an Axis I comorbid psychiatric disorder being 78.9% and for those with subclinical BED, 63.6%.



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