Maintenance of Binge Eating through Negative Mood: A Naturalistic Comparison of Binge Eating Disorder and Bulimia Nervosa

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Objective:To examine negative mood as a proximal antecedent and reinforcing condition of binge eating in binge eating disorder (BED) and bulimia nervosa (BN).Method:Using an ecological momentary assessment design, 20 women with BED, 20 women with BN, and 20 nonclinical control women were recruited from the community, provided with a portable minicomputer, and asked to rate their mood and list their thoughts at randomlygenerated beep sounds and before, during, and after episodes of eating.Results:In both eating disorder groups mood before binge eating was more negative than before regular eating and at random assessment. Binge eating was followed by a deterioration of mood. The BED group revealed less antecedent negative mood than the BN group and less concomitant negative cognitions about food/eating and stress.Conclusion:Affect regulation difficulties likely lead to binge eating in both disorders, but binge eating may not be effective for regulating overall mood. © 2007 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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