An innovation platform sponsored by the Novo Nordisk Foundation
High, Medium and Low Intensity Interventions for Binge Eating Disorder – Region H

High, Medium and Low Intensity Interventions for Binge Eating Disorder

Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is considered to be the most widespread eating disorder in the Western world. It's a serious disorder that's associated with severe psychiatric and somatic comorbidities. BED is characterised by frequent episodes of binge eating with a loss of control that leads to severe emotional distress.

The Inspiration Behind the Innovation

While previous research has established that psychotherapy can be an effective treatment for BED, it’s not currently offered within the Danish healthcare system. BED is the only eating disorder without a standardised treatment offer, creating healthcare inequality for up to 300,000 people in Denmark who may suffer from this condition. Furthermore, no Danish RCT studies have tested the efficacy of possible BED treatments, leaving little foundation for the development of clinical treatment guidelines. The team wishes to conduct the largest BED treatment study in the world to date – and the first to compare individual, group and technology-based psychotherapy interventions.

The Innovation 

This project will develop and establish the efficacy of four Danish treatment manuals with the aim of creating a stepped care model based on prediction models of which interventions work and for whom. Two of the manuals will be novel interventions, with the remaining two being established treatment manuals that will be translated and adapted to the Danish psychiatry target group for BED.

Once the manuals have been completed, the project team will train therapists from the Psychiatric Centre Ballerup in the interventions. These interventions will be piloted to 320 patients over three years with each patient being randomly assigned to one of the four types of psychotherapy interventions. The team will measure the psychological, social and metabolic outcomes of each approach. The team will investigate patient and clinician preferences in parallel and conduct subgroup analyses to determine whether some treatments were more effective for particular subgroups. The findings will inform the development of clinical guidelines and best practice workflows – and the manuals will be freely available to public institutions once their efficacy has been established.

The Team

Anne Bryde Christensen: Assistant Professor & Senior Researcher; Center for Eating and Feeding Disorders Research, Mental Health Center Ballerup (Capital Region of Denmark)

Sophie Öberg: Clinical Psychologist; Project Leader for Binge Eating Disorder Mental Health Center Ballerup (Capital Region of Denmark)

Nadia Micali: Professor; Head of Research Center for Eating and Feeding Disorders, Research Mental Health Center Ballerup (Capital Region of Denmark)