Food Exposure in Patients with Bulimia nervosaNeudeck P.a · Florin I.b, · Tuschen-Caffier B.b
aChristoph-Dornier-Foundation for Clinical Psychology, Berlin, and bDepartment of Psychology, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany
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Background: The aim of the study was to investigate psychological and physiological responses of bulimic patients to the repeated presentation of food cues. Method: On 2 subsequent days, 48 bulimic women (DSM-IV) were confronted with high- or low-caloric food for 20 min. A control group (n = 24) was exposed to high-caloric food once. Blood sugar levels were manipulated with a glucose load. Results: High-caloric food only elicited increases in urge to binge, subjective and physiological stress in the first session. During the second session, reported urge to binge and subjective stress was significantly lower. Bulimic patients confronted with high-caloric food showed higher subjective and physiological stress in the first session compared to bulimic patients confronted with low-caloric food. In the second session, they reported more subjective stress and urge to binge, compared to the low-caloric group. Blood sugar levels did not affect psychological and physiological responses. Discussion: The results are discussed in terms of the conditioning model of binge eating model, habituation models and implications for exposure therapy.
© 2001 S. Karger AG, Basel
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