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Title: How women experience binge eating : an IPA study
Author: Towner, Tracy
ISNI:       0000 0004 9351 0682
Awarding Body: University of the West of England
Current Institution: University of the West of England, Bristol
Date of Award: 2019
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Binge eating disorder (BED) is the most common eating disorder and women experience it disproportionately to men. BED is associated with a host of negative comorbid physical and mental health conditions. Although there is a strong literature base around the area of eating disorders, BED is under researched; in particular there is an absence of research looking at how participants experience BED. In the current study six women, who met diagnostic criteria for BED, were interviewed and the resulting transcripts were qualitatively analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The analysis suggests that the women understand a range of factors as contributing to their bingeing behaviour, including negative affect, history of food control in childhood, and socio-cultural factors around the meaning of eating for women. The analysis also suggests the existence of maintenance factors for bingeing, including participants’ experience of the pleasures of bingeing, their visceral sense of being powerless to stop a binge and a number of cognitions that work to justify bingeing behaviour. Across the data it was notable that while the participants showed some understanding of their bingeing behaviour, overall their understanding seemed partial and superficial. Furthermore, a unifying thread seemed to be that binge eating behaviour spans different levels of explanation - individual psychological, relational and social – but a coherent and convincing understanding is missing. These results are discussed in terms of the existing theory and research on BED and implications for practice are considered.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Couns.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available