Attention bias for food, eating behaviour and body weight
Living in an “obesogenic” environment poses a serious challenge for weight maintenance. Yet, not everybody is equally susceptible to food temptations. The way in which someone perceives and reacts to this environment could contribute to individual differences in the susceptibility to food temptations. Recently, a surge of research has tested if attention bias for food is related to eating behaviour and body weight. It has been argued that an attention bias for food could be a cognitive route for overeating and weight gain, resulting in obesity. The primary aim of the current presentation is to review existing empirical evidence for the notion that selective attention for food relates (causally) to eating behaviour and weight gain. Another aim is to highlight methodological challenges when studying attention bias for food cues.
Jessica Werthmann is a Postdoc Researcher in Psychology at King’s College London (UK).
Talk organized by the PSYFOOD UCL-ULB joint research group
(Promotors: Axel Cleeremans, Olivier Corneille, Olivier Klein, Olivier Luminet, Stephan Van den Broucke)