The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition; (DSM–5; American Psychiatric Association, 2013) diagnostic criterion for Binge Eating Disorder are as follows:

  • Recurrent episodes of binge eating. An episode of binge eating is characterized by both:
    • eating, in a discrete period of time, an amount of food that is definitely larger than most people would eat in a similar period of time under similar circumstances
    • a sense of lack of control over eating during the episode
  • Episodes include three (or more) behaviors:
    • eating much more rapidly than normal
    • eating until feeling uncomfortably full
    • eating large amounts of food when not feeling physically hungry
    • eating alone because of feeling embarrassed by how much one is eating
    • feeling disgusted with oneself, depressed, or very guilty afterwards
  • Marked distress regarding binge eating is present
  • The binge eating occurs, on average, at least once a week for three months.
  • The binge eating is not associated with the recurrent use of inappropriate compensatory behavior (for example, purging)