Author(s): W.Stewart Agras
The Overcoming Eating Disorders, Second Edition program addresses the cognitive-behavioral treatment of Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating Disorder. CBT has been proven the most effective treatment for helping patients improve their eating habits and overcome their disorder. The treatment described is divided into three overlapping phases: behavior change, identifying binge triggers, and relapse prevention. The main focus of the program is the normalization of eating. Patients use self-monitoring forms to track their eating habits on a daily basis while they work toward establishing a pattern of 3 meals and 2 snacks per day eaten at regular intervals. Once a regular pattern of eating has been established, patients move on to recognizing and eliminating their triggers for binging and purging. CBT techniques like problem-solving and cognitive restructuring help patients deal with negative mood states, faulty interpersonal interactions, and errors in thinking. The final phase of treatment consists of a review of the positive changes that have occurred during treatment, as well as a discussion of any residual problems and ways to handle setbacks or lapses.