Alzheimer’s Drug Could Help Curb Binge Eating

An Alzheimer’s drug that helps regulate compulsivity could reduce the urge to binge eat, according to a new study published in Neuropsychopharmacology.

Mematine, a neuroprotective drug, helps to suppress the triggers associated with impulsive behavior, like binge eating.

“We found that memantine, which blocks glutamate NMDA receptors, blocks binge eating of junk food, blocks the strength of cues associated with junk food and blocks the compulsivity associated with binge eating,” said senior author Pietro Cottone, PhD, associate professor of pharmacology and psychiatry at Boston University Medical Center and co-director of the Laboratory of Addictive Disorders.

The brain’s addiction center

The researchers also identified that a specific area of the brain associated with addictive behaviors – the nucleus accumbens – triggers the effects of mematine.

Applying the drug directly into that area seemed to help curb binge-eating behavior.

“Individuals with binge eating disorder have a very poor quality of life and decreased lifespan,” said Dr. Valentina Sabino, study co-author and assistant professor of pharmacology and psychiatry at BUSM. “Our study gives a better understanding of the underpinning neurobiological mechanisms of the disorder.”

Source: News-Medical Net

Eating Disorder Self Test. Take the EAT-26 self test to see if you might have eating disorder symptoms that might require professional evaluation. All answers are confidential.

Find a Treatment Facility Near You

Click on a state below to find eating disorder treatment options that could be right for you.

How our helpline works

For those seeking addiction treatment for themselves or a loved one, the helpline is a private and convenient solution.

Calls to any general helpline (non-facility specific 1-8XX numbers) for your visit will be answered by American Addiction Centers (AAC).

We are standing by 24/7 to discuss your treatment options. Our representatives work solely for AAC and will discuss whether an AAC facility may be an option for you. Our helpline is offered at no cost to you and with no obligation to enter into treatment. Neither nor AAC receives any commission or other fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a visitor may ultimately choose.

For more information on AAC’s commitment to ethical marketing and treatment practices, or to learn more about how to select a treatment provider, visit our About AAC page. If you wish to explore additional treatment options or connect with a specific rehab center, you can browse top-rated listings or visit SAMHSA.