Implicit and Explicit Motivational Responses to High- and Low-calorie Food in Women with Disordered Eating
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Eating disorders and their component symptoms have been associated with altered implicit and explicit motivational responding to high‐calorie food. This includes increased startle blink and postauricular reflex reactivity as well as both increased and decreased valence, arousal, and craving ratings. No study has examined reflexive responding to low‐calorie food in individuals with disordered eating. The current study compared motivational responding to high‐ and low‐calorie food images, assessed both implicitly via the startle blink and postauricular reflexes and explicitly via Self‐Assessment Manikin (SAM) ratings. Participants were 75 women recruited based on the presence or absence of binge eating and restrictive eating. High‐calorie (i.e., sweet and savoury food) and low‐calorie (i.e., fruits, vegetables) images were primarily selected from the Open Library of Affective Foods designed for use with the IAPS and SAM. Startle blink reflexes during both high‐ and low‐calorie food images were significantly lower than during neutral images, whereas only high‐calorie food images were associated with greater postauricular reflex reactivity than neutral images. Craving and arousal ratings were significantly greater for high‐calorie than low‐calorie food, while valence ratings were similar for both types of food. Neither binge eating nor restrictive eating moderated these associations. Additional research with patients with eating disorders and healthy controls can add to our understanding of physiological and self‐reported motivational reactions to high‐ and low‐calorie food.
Eating disorders; Startle blink reflex; Postauricular refllex
Implicit and Explicit Motivational Responses to High- and Low-calorie Food in Women with Disordered Eating.