SUBJECTIVE BINGE EATING: PHENOMENOLOGY, MOMENTARY EMOTIONS, AND ASSOCIATED FEATURES Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
Creator
  • Brownstone, Lisa
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience
Abstract
  • The current study explored the phenomenology of subjective binge eating (SBE), which is defined as loss of control eating when one does not eat an objectively large quantity of food, but subjectively perceives the amount as large in quantity. Most research up to this point has focused on objective binge eating (OBE), which involves objectively large quantities of food combined with loss of control. Preliminary research, however, suggests that SBEs are associated with similar, if not higher, levels of bulimic behavior severity, trait-level negative affect, and interpersonal difficulties as OBEs. This was the first study to recruit individuals who had regular SBEs to explore the following: (1) facets of SBEs that could expand our current definition and understanding of the behavior, (2) how SBEs are related to momentary affect, and (3) how SBEs are related to broader psychological difficulties (e.g., disordered eating symptoms, negative affect, interpersonal difficulties). We completed a three-study design. The first study involved a quantitative and qualitative online survey, and recruited individuals with SBEs and/or OBEs, and individuals without loss of control eating. The second study focused on quantitative questions and used online survey methodology to recruit individuals with SBEs and/or OBEs. The third study followed up with individuals who reported having engaged in SBEs in the second study with a qualitative phone interview aimed at better explaining and building upon findings from the first and second studies. Most notably, SBEs appeared to be indicative of higher disordered symptomatology (i.e., dietary restraint, compensatory behaviors, body shame) and anxiety/depressive symptoms than OBEs on their own. SBEs were also found to coincide with increases in negative emotion from before to after their occurrence. Additionally, SBEs were less likely to be described as intended or planned than OBEs. We conclude that SBEs likely have a phenomenology that is in many ways distinct from OBEs, and, further, that they are worthy of clinical concern.
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  • In Copyright
Advisor
  • Peterson, Carol
  • Bulik, Cynthia
  • Fredrickson, Barbara
  • Bardone-Cone, Anna
  • Baucom, Donald
  • Maman, Suzanne
Degree
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2017
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