The Role of Food Addiction in Clinical Research
Ashley N. Gearhardt M.S., M. Phil and William R. Corbin
Affiliation: Yale University Department of Psychology, 2 Hillhouse Ave. New Haven, Connecticut 06511.
Keywords: Food addiction, obesity, binge eating disorder, substance dependence, addiction, dichotomous, distress, pathology, palatable, symptoms, comorbidity, overconsumption, neurobiological, pharmacotherapies, dignosis, alcohol, syndrome
Recent research has uncovered neurobiological and behavioral similarities between substance dependence and excess consumption of highly processed foods. These findings have led to the theory that food addiction may play a role in obesity and disordered eating. The inclusion of validated food addiction measures in clinical research, such as the Yale Food Addiction Scale, will add to the understanding of the clinical utility of this concept. Further exploring the food-addiction construct may also lead to a better clinical understanding of obesity and eating disorders and suggest future avenues for more effectively treating these problems.
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