Synopses & Reviews
A renowned expert on binge eating, the director of the Eating Disorders Program at the University of North Carolina, shares proven techniques for conquering food cravings.
Clinical psychologist Cynthia M. Bulik, specially trained in psychiatric genetics, is a leading authority on eating disorders such as binge eating disorder (BED). For twenty years she and other researchers have tracked thousands of people, and have found that BED runs in families. I n 2000, Bulik was one of a group of researchers who studied eight thousand sets of twins in a Norwegian registry to learn more about how genes contribute to binge eating disorder. T hey found an astonishingly high heritability of 47 percent. Binge eating disorder is less well known than anorexia or bulimia nervosa but is more prevalent. Health professionals estimate that more than five million American women and three million men suffer from BED. Jane Brody revealed in the New York Times that when she was twenty-three years old, her food binges were so extreme that “many mornings I awakened to find partly chewed food still in my mouth.”
Genetic predisposition, brain chemistry, psychology, and cultural pressures increase a persons susceptibility to BED, but bingeing is not inevitable. Crave helps readers understand why they crave specific foods, recognize what triggers their strong urges, and get control over their responses to those triggers. BED is highly treatable; Bulik shares with readers a set of easy-to-implement “curb the crave” techniques that has empowered patients at the U NC Eating Disorders Program and elsewhere to triumph over their binge eating. T hrough the stories of some of these patients—men and women, young and old—and with the guidance of Bulik, readers will develop effective strategies to successfully conquer their cravings and establish healthy eating and activity habits.
February 2007, a landmark clinical study by researchers at Harvard University was published in "Biological Psychiatry" and was soon picked up widely by the media. A survey of 3,000 participants found that 2.8 percent of them suffered from binge eating disorder (BED); that women were twice as likely to report binge eating; and that BED occurs across the age span, from children to the elderly. By extrapolating the statistics to the general population, health professionals estimate 5,250,000 American women and 3,000,000 men suffer from binge eating. The same month the study was published Jane Brody revealed in the "New York Times" that when she was a 23 years old, her food binges were so extreme that "Many mornings I awakened to find partly chewed food still in my mouth...."
Cynthia Bulik, director of the UNC Eating Disorders Progam, is a foremost authority on binge eating. BED can affect anyone, and can be caused by brain chemistry, genetic predisposition, psychology, and cultural pressures--but none of those triggers make giving in to food cravings inevitable. "Crave" helps readers understand why they crave specific foods, recognize their individual triggers, and modify their responses to those triggers. Binge eating disorder is highly treatable; 70% to 80% of patients at the UNC Eating Disorders Program triumph over their binge eating by using techniques to "curb the crave." Through the stories of some of these patients--men and women, young and old--and with the guidance of Bulik, readers will develop a variety of strategies to use in conquering their cravings and establishing healthy eating habits.
About the Author
Cynthia M. Bulik, Ph.D., FAED , is the William and Jeanne Jordan Distinguished Professor of Eating Disorders in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine, professor of nutrition at UNCs School of Public Health, and director of the U NC Eating Disorders Program. She has been featured or quoted in Vogue, Newsweek, Self, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal. T he coauthor (with Nadine T aylor) of Runaway Eating, Bulik lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.