Eating Disorders

Substance Use Disorder

Sugar, Food, Binge, and Overeating: The Addiction Connection and Treatment Implications

Thursday, October 25
9:00 AM - 10:15 AM
Location: Tangerine WF4

This session will review the history of the sugar and food addiction hypothesis, relationship of these clinical entities to binge eating disorder (BED), and implications for diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Gold will describe how this hypothesis has been utilized to identify new and effective treatments. Anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and BED are the major DSM 5 eating disorders, and with the Yale Food Addiction Scale and recent magnetic resonance imaging and related data, food-sugar addiction may be reliably identified. Treatment implications and future research areas will be discussed.

Mark Stephen Gold, MD

Washington University in St Louis
Washington University in St Louis
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

Mark S. Gold, MD (, is a teacher of the year, translational researcher, author, and inventor best known for his work on the brain systems underlying the effects of drugs and food. He has published over 1000 peer reviewed scientific articles, texts, and practice guidelines. Gold has been awarded the APA's Foundations Fund Prize, ASAM's McGovern Lifetime Achievement, National Leadership Award (NAATP) , China Academy of Sciences, Silver Anvil, and He was awarded Distinguished Alumni Awards at Yale University, U.F., and Washington University .Gold was a Professor, Eminent Scholar, Distinguished Professor, Distinguished Alumni Professor , Chairman, Emeritus Eminent Scholar during his 25 years at the University of Florida . His work is widely cited by his peers. Working closely with Bart Hoebel and Nicole Avena at Princeton University, Gold worked on sugar self-administration models for hedonic overeating working and developed new treatments. Kelly Brownell and Gold’s Oxford University Press’s Food Addiction has been widely recognized as ground- breaking. He has also worked on dual disorders, Anorexia and Bulimia Nervosa. Since his retirement as a full-time academic, Gold has continued teaching, mentoring, and research as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Washington University and an active member of the Clinical Council at the Washington University School of Medicine’s Public Health Institute. He regularly lectures at Medical School Grand Rounds and at international and national scientific meetings on his 45 years of ground-breaking research career, prevention efforts and bench-to-bedside science in eating disorders, obesity, and addictions.


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