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[PUBLICATION] Food Addiction among Female Patients Seeking Treatment for an Eating Disorder

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Food Addiction among Female Patients Seeking Treatment for an Eating Disorder
Food Addiction among Female Patients Seeking Treatment for an Eating Disorder
Date(s)

le 14 août 2020

Published in Nutrients

Collaborative research project led by Prof. Marie Grall-Bronnec (Addictology and Psychiatry Department, Hôpital Saint Jacques, University Hospital of Nantes, Nantes, France) in which Dr. Paul Brunault participated

Food Addiction among Female Patients Seeking Treatment for an Eating Disorder: Prevalence and Associated Factors

Abstract

The concept of "food addiction" (FA) has aroused much focus because of evidence for similarities between overeating and substance use disorders (SUDs). However, few studies have explored this concept among the broad spectrum of eating disorders (ED), especially in anorexia nervosa (AN). This study aimed to assess FA prevalence in ED female patients and to determine its associated factors. We recruited a total of 195 adult women with EDs from an ED treatment center. The prevalence of FA diagnosis (Yale Food Addiction Scale) in the whole ED sample was 83.6%; AN restrictive type (AN-R), 61.5%; AN binge-eating/purging type (AN-BP), 87.9%; bulimia nervosa (BN), 97.6%; and binge-eating disorder (BED), 93.3%. The most frequently met criteria of FA were "clinically significant impairment or distress in relation to food", "craving" and "persistent desire or repeated unsuccessful attempts to cut down". An FA diagnosis was independently associated with three variables: presence of recurrent episodes of binge eating, ED severity, and lower interoceptive awareness. In showing an overlap between ED and FA, this study allows for considering EDs, and AN-R in particular, from an "addictive point of view", and thus for designing therapeutic management that draws from those proposed for addictive disorders.

Keywords

YFAS; addictive disorder; addictive-like eating behavior; anorexia nervosa; binge eating disorder; bulimia nervosa; eating addiction; eating disorder; food addiction.

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