Sport Sciences for Health

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 47–51 | Cite as

Aerobic exercise training improves physical performance of patients with binge-eating disorder

  • Letizia Galasso
  • Angela Montaruli
  • Eleonora Bruno
  • Cristiana Pesenti
  • Stefano Erzegovesi
  • Emiliano Cè
  • Giuseppe Coratella
  • Eliana Roveda
  • Fabio Esposito
Original Article


The aim of this study was to investigate the combined effects of aerobic exercise training and traditional treatment on body mass index (BMI) and aerobic capacity compared to the traditional treatment alone in patients with binge-eating disorder (BED). Fourteen BED patients were divided into Intervention Group (IG, n = 6) and Control Group (CG, n = 8). All patients participated into the weekly multidisciplinary program. In addition, IG underwent an aerobic exercise-training period of 6 months. At baseline and after 6 months of intervention, both groups underwent measurements of BMI and six-minute walk test (6MWT). BMI reduced in both groups (47.2 ± 5.5  and 42.7 ± 5.1 kg/m2 in IG PRE and IG POST, respectively; p < 0.01; 46.6 ± 6.9 and 44.3 ± 6.1 kg/m2 in CG PRE and CG POST, respectively; p < 0.01), but IG obtained a greater reduction than CG. Indeed, a BMI reduction of −4.50 kg/m2 in IG occurred while in CG decreased by −2.30 kg/m2 (p < 0.05). The IG improved the 6MWT (435.9 ± 106.2 and 519.1 ± 151.5 m in IG PRE and IG POST, respectively; p < 0.01). In addition, the CG improved 6MWT (455.5 ± 114.9 and 502.5 ± 110.7 m in CG PRE and CG POST, respectively; p < 0.01) probably because of the influence of diet and changes in body composition, even though the difference did not achieve statistical significance. Changes induced by the combined intervention were significantly greater than traditional treatment alone, suggesting that the addition of physical exercise constitutes a novel potential therapeutic approach in eating disorders.


Binge-eating disorder Body mass index Aerobic capacity Physical activity Six-minute walk test 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. The Ethics Committee of the S. Raffaele Hospital of Milan (Italy) approved the study.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia S.r.l. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Letizia Galasso
    • 1
  • Angela Montaruli
    • 1
  • Eleonora Bruno
    • 1
    • 2
  • Cristiana Pesenti
    • 1
  • Stefano Erzegovesi
    • 3
  • Emiliano Cè
    • 1
  • Giuseppe Coratella
    • 1
  • Eliana Roveda
    • 1
  • Fabio Esposito
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biomedical Sciences for HealthUniversity of MilanMilanItaly
  2. 2.Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale TumoriMilanItaly
  3. 3.Department of Clinical NeuroscienceSan Raffaele Scientific InstituteMilanItaly

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