New Digital Self-Help Treatment for Binge Eating

Posted 30/01/2020


We have developed a novel online self-help treatment for people troubled by repeated binge eating.  It is directly based on a leading face-to-face psychological treatment called CBT-E (enhanced cognitive behaviour therapy). We are seeking volunteers to help us to test this new treatment. 

Authors: Dr Rebecca Murphy and Charandeep Khera Affiliation: The Centre for Research on Eating Disorders (CREDO) at the University of Oxford. Contact Emails:;

What is the purpose of the research?

We are seeking volunteers to help us test a new online self-help treatment for binge eating. This treatment is an online version of a leading evidence-based face-to-face psychological treatment for repeated binge eating. We need to learn more about its effects and what it is like using it. Our goal is to progressively improve the treatment. 

We must stress that this is a new treatment and its effectiveness has not yet been established. 

Who can take part?

You are eligible to take part if you are over 18 years old and have had repeated episodes of binge eating over the past three months.  By “binge eating” we mean episodes of eating in which you have felt out of control at the time and have eaten an unusually large amount of food for the circumstances. These episodes should have been occurring at least weekly.

We will be asking people who wish to participate about their current weight. We are unable to accept people who are engaging in severely high levels of vomiting/laxative use, or who are significantly underweight, or significantly overweight, or those who have problems with substance misuse. Nor can we accept people who are currently in treatment for an eating problem or waiting for treatment.

What does the study involve?

If you would like to take part and think you are eligible, we will give you access to a website which will provide more information about the treatment (called “Digital CBTe”). You can then complete an online assessment of your eating problem. If this confirms that you are eligible, you will be given access to Digital CBTe.  

Digital CBTe comprises regular online treatment “sessions”. There are 12 “sessions” over 8 weeks and each session lasts approximately 20 minutes.  Between the sessions you will be asked to do things that will help you steadily regain control over your eating. The entire treatment lasts eight weeks. It is a self-help programme (without therapist support).

Digital CBTe can be accessed using a tablet, laptop, desktop or a smartphone (via an app). It works on Android and Apple iOS devices.

Our goal is to collect data on the effects of Digital CBTe and your views on it. We will reimburse you for time spent.

How can you take part?

If you are interested in taking part, please email


The development of Digital CBTe was funded by the Wellcome Trust. This study is funded by Oxford Biomedical Research Centre.

Oxford University