Night-Eating Disorder: Meaning, Signs, Causes, And Treatment

Night-Eating Disorder: Meaning, Signs, Causes, And Treatment

Do you often find yourself eating dinner late at night? Or maybe you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep because you’re so hungry? If so, you may be suffering from the night-eating syndrome. This condition is characterized by a person’s tendency to eat more food after dinner than during the day. While there are no strict diagnostic criteria for night eating syndrome, certain symptoms are commonly associated with it. In this blog post, we will discuss night eating syndrome, its symptoms, and how it can be treated.

What Is Night-Eating Disorder?

What Is Night-Eating Disorder?Night eating disorder is characterized by a pattern of late-night overeating. This disorder is also characterized by feelings of guilt, depression, and insomnia. People with night eating disorders often have trouble sleeping and may eat more than half of their daily calories at night. Night eating disorder is different from binge eating disorder because people with night eating disorder do not purge after they eat.

This type of disorder is also different from sleep eating, which is a type of sleep disorder that causes people to eat while they are asleep. Night-eating syndrome is also different from nocturnal hypoglycemia, which is low blood sugar at night.

There may be some medical causes for the night-eating syndromes, such as a sleep disorder or hormonal imbalance. Night eating syndrome may also be caused by psychological factors, such as stress, anxiety, or depression. Treatment for night-eating syndrome may include therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes. It also may be necessary to treat any underlying medical conditions.

Signs and Symptoms of Night-Eating Syndrome

Signs and Symptoms of Night-Eating Syndrome

There are many signs and symptoms of night-eating syndrome. Some people may only experience a few, while others may experience many. The most common symptom is eating more than half of your daily calories at night. Other symptoms include:

Depression

Depression may be one sign of the night-eating syndrome. People with the night-eating syndrome often have trouble sleeping, which can lead to feelings of depression. There may be many psychological factors that contribute to the night-eating syndrome. It is important to talk to your doctor if you are feeling depressed. Sometimes, medication may be necessary to treat depression.

Anxiety

Anxiety is a common symptom of the night-eating syndrome. People with this disorder may have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep due to anxiety about sleeping. They may also experience daytime anxiety and worry about not being able to eat during the day. Also, the night-eating syndrome has been linked to depression. People with this disorder may have trouble concentrating, feel down or hopeless, and have low energy during the day.

Another Eating Disorder

Also, people with night-eating syndrome may have another eating disorder, such as binge eating disorder or anorexia nervosa. Binge eating disorder is characterized by episodes of overeating followed by feelings of guilt or shame. Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder that involves restricting food intake and excessive exercise.

Constant Waking-Up In Middle of Night

Also, people with the night-eating syndrome may have trouble staying asleep or may wake up in the middle of the night and be unable to go back to sleep. They may find themselves eating during these awakenings. This can disrupt the normal sleep cycle and lead to fatigue during the day.

Excessive Sleepiness

People with night-eating syndrome may also experience excessive sleepiness during the day. This can be caused by the disruption of the normal sleep cycle. It can also be caused by the consumption of high-calorie foods at night, which can lead to weight gain and obesity.

Constant Cravings for Carbohydrate-Rich Foods

People with night-eating syndrome may also have constant cravings for carbohydrate-rich foods, such as pasta, bread, and cereal. They may eat these foods late at night or during the day. These cravings can lead to weight gain and obesity.

Cravings For Sweet or High-Fat Foods

People with night-eating syndrome may also have cravings for sweet or high-fat foods. They may eat these foods late at night or during the day. These cravings can lead to weight gain and obesity.

There may also be many other symptoms not mentioned here. If you think you may have night-eating syndrome, it is important to talk to your doctor. Treatment for this disorder may include therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes.

Causes of Night-Eating Syndrome

Causes of Night-Eating Syndrome

There are many causes of the night-eating syndrome. Some of these are:

Genetics

Genetics is one of the main causes of night-eating syndrome. This disorder can be passed down from family members. Sometimes there maybe be a history of eating disorders or obesity in the family. When a person is genetically predisposed to night-eating syndrome, they may be more likely to develop the disorder. There can also be a genetic link to other eating disorders, such as binge eating disorders or anorexia nervosa.

Psychological Factors

Psychological factors can also play a role in the development of night eating syndrome. These factors may include anxiety, stress, depression, and insomnia. People who have these psychological disorders may be more likely to develop the night-eating syndrome. There are also some studies that suggest that night-eating syndrome may be linked to trauma. People who have experienced traumatic events, such as abuse or combat, may be more likely to develop the disorder.

Cushing’s Syndrome

Cushing’s syndrome is a condition that occurs when there is too much cortisol in the body. Cortisol is a hormone that helps to regulate metabolism and stress. When there is too much cortisol in the body, it can lead to weight gain, fatigue, and mood swings. People with Cushing’s syndrome may be more likely to develop the night-eating syndrome.

Sleep Patterns

Sleep patterns are also a cause of the night-eating syndrome. People who have irregular sleep patterns or who do not get enough sleep may be more likely to develop the disorder. This is because when a person is sleep-deprived, they are more likely to experience hunger and cravings. It may be hard for them to resist eating late at night or during the day.

Lifestyle Factors

Lifestyle factors can also play a role in the development of night eating syndrome. These factors include working late hours, shift work, and jet lag. People who have these lifestyle factors may be more likely to develop the disorder. There are also some studies that suggest that night-eating syndrome may be linked to the use of certain medications, such as antidepressants.

Negative Impacts of Night Eating Syndrome

Negative Impacts of Night Eating Syndrome

There are many negative impacts of the night-eating syndrome, both on the sufferer and their loved ones.

Physical Health

The most obvious impact is on the sufferer’s physical health. Night eating syndrome can lead to weight gain, as well as other health problems such as type II diabetes and high blood pressure. It can also have a negative impact on mental health, causing problems such as anxiety and depression. There are also some studies that suggest that night-eating syndrome may be linked to an increased risk of developing cancer.

Social Life

The night-eating syndrome can also have a negative impact on the sufferer’s social life. This is because the disorder can make it difficult for the sufferer to stick to a regular sleep schedule. This can make it hard for them to participate in social activities, as well as work or school. It can also lead to isolation and loneliness. Social life also has a negative impact on the relationship between the sufferer and their loved ones. Relationships are often strained by the disorder, as it can be hard for loved ones to understand what the sufferer is going through.

Personal Life

Personal life is also often negatively affected by the night-eating syndrome. This is because the disorder can make it hard for the sufferer to stick to a regular sleep schedule. This can make it difficult for them to participate in activities with family and friends. It can also lead to isolation and loneliness. The night-eating syndrome can also have a negative impact on work or school performance. It may be hard for the sufferer to concentrate or focus on their work.

Diagnosis of Night-Eating Syndrome

The diagnosis of the night-eating syndrome (NES) is not straightforward. It often occurs in people with other eating disorders, such as bulimia nervosa or anorexia nervosa. NES can also co-occur with depression, anxiety disorders, and substance abuse.

There are no specific medical tests for NES. A diagnosis is made by a mental health professional after conducting a clinical interview and ruling out other conditions.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) lists the following criteria for a diagnosis of NES:

  • Eating at least 50% of daily calories at night
  • Insomnia or waking up frequently at night to eat
  • Feeling unhappy or irritable if you don’t eat at night
  • Eating when you’re not physically hungry
  • Feeling guilty, ashamed, or depressed about your eating

These symptoms must be present for at least two months and cause significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

NES is a relatively new diagnosis. As such, there is little research on its prevalence. One study found that NES affects about 0.36% of the population. Night-eating syndrome is more common in women than men and usually begins in adolescence or young adulthood.

Also, people with NES are more likely to be obese and have diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. People with NES are also more likely to have a family history of obesity or other eating disorders.

Treatment for Night-Eating Syndrome

Treatment for Night-Eating Syndrome

There is no specific treatment for NES, but there are some general approaches that may be helpful. These include:

Medications

Medications are one treatment option for NES. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a type of antidepressant that has been shown to be effective in treating NES. Other medications that have been studied include topiramate, a medication used to treat epilepsy, and zolpidem, a sleep medication. Sometimes these medications are also used to treat other conditions that often occur with NES, such as depression or anxiety.

There are also some medications, such as antipsychotics, that have been shown to be effective in treating the binge-eating component of NES. However, these medications can cause serious side effects and should only be used under the supervision of mental health professional.

Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy is another treatment option for NES. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of psychotherapy that has been shown to be effective in treating NES. CBT focuses on changing the thoughts and behaviors that contribute to NES. Other types of psychotherapy, such as interpersonal therapy or acceptance and commitment therapy, may also be helpful.

There are therapies like dialectical behavior therapy that have been found to be helpful in treating other disorders that often co-occur with NES, such as depression, anxiety, and substance abuse.

MantraCare is a website that helps to provide resources and support for people with NES. We have different types of articles that can help you learn more about NES and how to cope with it. We also have a forum where you can connect with other people who have NES. There are many blogs and articles on our website that can help you understand NES and how to cope with it.

Lifestyle Changes

Making lifestyle changes can also be helpful in treating NES. Getting regular exercise and eating a healthy diet is important for overall physical and mental health. Exercise has also been shown to be effective in treating other conditions that often co-occur with NES, such as depression and anxiety.

Sticking to a regular sleep schedule is also important for treating NES. This means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, even on weekends. It’s also important to avoid caffeine and alcohol before bedtime.

Self-Help Strategies

There are also some self-help strategies that may be helpful in managing NES. These include:

Eating regular meals 

Sometimes people with NES find it helpful to eat regular meals during the day and avoid eating late at night. This can help to reduce the urge to binge eat at night.

Identifying and avoiding triggers

It can also be helpful to identify and avoid triggers that may lead to NES. Triggers are different for everyone, but they may include things like stress, boredom, or anxiety. Once you know what your triggers are, you can try to avoid them.

Making sure you’re getting enough sleep

Getting enough sleep is important for overall health and well-being. It’s also important in managing NES. People with NES often have trouble sleeping, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting enough sleep. This may mean going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, even on weekends.

Staying hydrated

Drinking plenty of fluids is important for overall health. It’s also important in managing NES. People with NES often have trouble staying hydrated, so it’s important to make sure you’re drinking enough fluids during the day.

These are just some of the ways that you can manage NES. If you think you might have NES, it’s important to talk to a mental health professional.

How To Help Someone With Night Eating Syndrome?

How To Help Someone With Night Eating Syndrome?

Helping someone with the night-eating syndrome can be difficult. They may not want to change their habits and may not believe that they have a problem. The first step is to talk to them about your concerns. If they are open to change, there are a few things you can do to help them.

Some the other tips to help someone with night eating syndrome:

Talk To Them

You should always talk to them about your concerns. If they are open to change, you can help them by doing a few things. When talking to them, be sure to use “I” statements. For example, “I am worried about your eating habits.”

Educate Yourself And Them About The Disorder

Night eating syndrome is a real disorder and it can be treated. There are many resources available to help educate yourself and the person you are helping about the disorder. It also may be helpful to read stories of other people who have overcome the disorder.

Encourage Them To Seek Help From A Professional

There are many professionals who can help treat night-eating syndrome. A therapist can help them understand their disorder and work on changing their behaviors. A dietitian can help them develop a healthy eating plan. A doctor can rule out any medical conditions that may be causing the symptoms.

Provide Support

Providing support is one of the most important things you can do. This includes emotional support, practical support, and social support. Emotional support involves listening to them and being there for them. Practical support involves helping them with things like grocery shopping or cooking meals. Social support involves spending time with them and doing activities together.

Making changes can be difficult, but you can support them by being there for them. encourage them to stick to their treatment plan and offer to help with anything they may need. For example, you could go with them to appointments or help them prepare meals.

Make A Plan Together

Making a plan together can help the person you are helping to change their habits. The plan should include things like healthy eating and regular exercise. It is important to make sure that the plan is realistic and achievable. It can make it a lot easier to stick to the plan if you do it together.

Check-In With Them Regularly

Regular check-ins can help you see how the person you are helping is doing. It can also be a good time to talk about any challenges they are facing or anything else that may be on their mind.

Night eating syndrome is a real disorder that can be difficult to manage. But with the help of a professional and loved one, it is possible to make changes and improve your quality of life. If you or someone you know may have NES, don’t hesitate to reach out for help.

Conclusion

Night eating syndrome is a real thing and it can be treated. If you think you may have the night-eating syndrome, talk to your doctor. There are a variety of treatments available that can help you get your symptoms under control. With the right treatment, you can start enjoying your evenings again.

If you or someone you know is struggling with the night-eating syndrome, there is help available. The Night Eating Syndrome Association offers support and resources for people affected by the disorder.

No matter what, know that you are not alone in this fight. There are people who care about you and want to help you get better. Seek out the help you need to get your life back on track. There are also many online resources available to help you learn more about the disorder and how to cope with it. Night eating syndrome does not have to control your life. You can get better and live a happy, healthy life.

Contact MantraCare today to book your first session of therapy. We offer a reasonable consultation so that you can explore how we can help you to manage the effects of night eating disorders. Visit our website or give us a call today.

A Word From Mantra Care

Your mental health — your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.

At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depressionanxietystressrelationshipOCDLGBTQ, and PTSD. You can take our mental health test. You can also book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.

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