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Altern Ther Health Med. 2016 Apr;22 Suppl 1:8-13.

Pilot Study on the Homeopathic Treatment of Binge Eating in Males.


Context • Frequent binge eating is often a symptom of an underlying eating disorder, such as bulimia nervosa (BN) or binge eating disorder (BED). The role of homeopathy in the treatment of binge eating remains poorly explored. Objective • The study intended to measure the efficacy of individualized homeopathic treatment for binge eating in adult males. Design • This case study was a 9-wk pilot using an embedded, mixed-methods design. A 3-wk baseline period was followed by a 6-wk treatment period. Setting • The setting was the Homeopathic Health Clinic at the University of Johannesburg in Johannesburg, South Africa. Participants • Through purposive sampling, the research team recruited 15 Caucasian, male participants, aged 18-45 y, who were exhibiting binge eating. Intervention • Individualized homeopathic remedies were prescribed to each participant. Primary Outcome Measures • Participants were assessed by means of (1) a self-assessment calendar (SAC), recording the frequency and intensity of binging; (2) the Binge Eating Scale (BES), a psychometric evaluation of severity; and (3) case analysis evaluating changes with time. Results • Ten participants completed the study. The study found a statistically significant improvement with regard to the BES (P = .003) and the SAC (P = .006), with a large effect size, indicating that a decrease occurred in the severity and frequency of binging behavior during the study period. Conclusions • This small study showed the potential benefits of individualized homeopathic treatment of binge eating in males, decreasing both the frequency and severity of binging episodes. Follow-up studies are recommended to explore this treatment modality as a complementary therapeutic option in eating disorders characterized by binge eating.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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