R.B. and C.W. are employees of HealthMedia, Inc., the company that developed and distributes the digital coaching program. R.B. is a shareholder in Johnson & Johnson, the parent company of HealthMedia. R.S. received compensation from HealthMedia, Inc. for work on this article.
Demographic and clinical characteristics of individuals utilizing an internet-based digital coaching program for recovering from binge eating†
Article first published online: 26 OCT 2010
Copyright © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
International Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume 44, Issue 7, pages 639–646, November 2011
How to Cite
Bedrosian, R. C., Striegel-Moore, R. H. and Wang, C. (2011), Demographic and clinical characteristics of individuals utilizing an internet-based digital coaching program for recovering from binge eating. Int. J. Eat. Disord., 44: 639–646. doi: 10.1002/eat.20844
The contents of this study are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH.
- Issue published online: 13 OCT 2011
- Article first published online: 26 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 26 JUN 2010
- Manuscript Revised: 7 MAY 2010
- Manuscript Received: 11 MAR 2010
- National Institute of Mental Health. Grant Number: MH61054
- eating disorders;
- binge eating;
- digital coaching;
- self-help treatment
While digital coaching self-help interventions to facilitate behavioral change are offered increasingly on the Internet, few studies have examined who uses them. This study examined demographic and clinical characteristics of adults who accessed a self-help program for binge eaters made available to them via their employers or health plans.
Cross-sectional data from 4,051 men and women who registered for the online program during a 13-month period were used. Gender differences and differences across three diagnostic groupings based on self-reported symptoms were tested using t-tests and ANOVAs (dimensional variables) or Chi-Square analyses (categorical variables).
More women (3,053) than men (998) accessed the program. A majority of participants reported binge eating below frequency levels required for a clinical diagnosis, yet reported high levels of motivation to overcome their eating binges. Few had received prior treatment for an eating disorder. Although women reported greater symptomatology on most variables, these differences typically reflected small effects. Comparisons of diagnostic subgroups found few differences between those with probable diagnoses of bulimia nervosa or binge eating disorder.
Digital coaching programs may be a viable treatment option, particularly for individuals with infrequent binge eating who otherwise might not seek or receive treatment. © 2010 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2010