'Impaired Autonomy and Performance' predicts binge eating disorder among obese patients

Eat Weight Disord. 2020 Oct;25(5):1183-1189. doi: 10.1007/s40519-019-00747-z. Epub 2019 Jul 13.


Purpose: The present study examined the predictive value of early maladaptive schema (EMS) domains on the diagnosis of binge eating disorder (BED).

Methods: Seventy obese patients seeking treatment for weight loss were recruited and allocated to either group 1 (obese) or group 2 (BED-obese) according to clinical diagnosis. Both groups underwent psychometric assessment for EMS (according to the latest four-factor model), eating and general psychopathologies. Logistic regression analysis was performed on significant variables and BED diagnosis.

Results: In addition to showing higher values on all clinical variables, BED-obese patients exhibited significantly higher scores for all four schema domains. Regression analysis revealed a 12-fold increase in risk of BED with 'Impaired Autonomy and Performance'. Depression did not account for a higher risk.

Conclusions: Impaired Autonomy and Performance is associated with BED in a sample of obese patients. Schema therapy should be considered a potential psychotherapy strategy in the treatment of BED.

Level of evidence: Level III, case-control study.

Keywords: BED; Binge; EMS; Obesity; Schema; Schema therapy.

MeSH terms

  • Binge-Eating Disorder* / complications
  • Binge-Eating Disorder* / diagnosis
  • Binge-Eating Disorder* / therapy
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Humans
  • Obesity / complications
  • Psychotherapy
  • Weight Loss