The Perth professor, whose research suggests a link between binge eating and sleep disorders, said the findings could help improve treatment.
- New research suggests a link between binge eating and sleep problems such as insomnia and next-day fatigue
- Professor Amanda Salis says the reason behind the connection has not yet been identified
- She hopes the findings will lead to better treatments if medical professionals are aware of the relevance.
Amanda Sallis from the University of Western Australia School of Human Sciences hopes the findings, published in the International Journal of Obesity, will help health professionals who treat binge eating.
“We know that sleep deprivation is detrimental to your health,” Salis said.
“For example, feeling tired and grumpy the next day can affect hunger and energy levels the next day, which can exacerbate binge eating.
“If people are undergoing treatment for or trying to get over their binge eating disorder and aren’t getting enough sleep, it may actually be making it harder than it needs to be.
Binge eating is when a person consumes more food than is considered appropriate for the situation.
Professor Salis said her interest in the field of obesity and weight loss was inspired by her own past relationship with food.
A former bulimic eater herself, she said the disorder was also associated with a sense of loss of control.
“We know more and more people are binge eating and overweight,” she said.
“I was binge eating, [I had] It makes me want to open the fridge and breathe in everything in it. “
Professor Salis’ research aims to clarify the relationship between binge eating and sleep by collating existing research results.
Her study found that people with bulimia had significantly worse sleep outcomes, but it wasn’t clear which symptoms were responsible.
“It could be either the chicken or the egg,” she said.
She hoped the findings would improve treatment by encouraging medical professionals to start screening people with bulimia for sleep deprivation.
Professor Salis said, “Absolutely excellent treatments for sleep deprivation are available.
She said Australia is a leader in treating eating disorders internationally and suggested that anyone experiencing bulimia or sleep problems should seek help.
She said online programs are a treatment option for eating disorders, and the InsideOut Institute is also a place to find treatment resources.
Salis was also seeking approval for a clinical study on weight loss and diet planned for this year.
“I’m looking for someone trying to lose weight for science,” she said.