Obesity has been associated with increased reward sensitivity to food stimuli, but a few studies have addressed this issue by using odors. This study investigated whether obesity is associated with increased liking and wanting of food odors and whether alexithymia, a psychological construct characterized by diminished affective abilities, contributes to altered responsiveness to food. Liking and wanting for food and pleasant non-food odors were measured through explicit (self-report ratings) and implicit measures (heart rate and skin conductance) in 23 women with healthy weight (HW) and 20 women with overweight/obesity (OW/OB). Differently from the HW group, the OW/OB group explicitly liked food odors less than non-food odors; but, at the implicit level, there were no differences in heart rate response for both types of odors, indicating that they were equally liked. Moreover, at variance with the HW group, the OW/OB group did not exhibit increased skin conductance response for food compared to nonfood odors. Alexithymia was associated with increased implicit liking and explicit wanting of food odors, in particular in the HW group. These findings show that obesity is characterized by high levels of implicit food liking and low levels of implicit food wanting. Moreover, both affective and motivational responses to food reward seem to be affected by alexithymia, which should be taken into account by studies evaluating the effect of cue exposure intervention for obesity treatment.

Food olfactory cues reactivity in individuals with obesity and the contribution of alexithymia / Cecchetto, C; Pisanu, E; Schopf, V; Rumiati, R I; Aiello, M. - In: APPETITE. - ISSN 0195-6663. - 169(2022), p. 105827. [10.1016/j.appet.2021.105827]

Food olfactory cues reactivity in individuals with obesity and the contribution of alexithymia

Cecchetto, C;Rumiati, R I;Aiello, M
2022

Abstract

Obesity has been associated with increased reward sensitivity to food stimuli, but a few studies have addressed this issue by using odors. This study investigated whether obesity is associated with increased liking and wanting of food odors and whether alexithymia, a psychological construct characterized by diminished affective abilities, contributes to altered responsiveness to food. Liking and wanting for food and pleasant non-food odors were measured through explicit (self-report ratings) and implicit measures (heart rate and skin conductance) in 23 women with healthy weight (HW) and 20 women with overweight/obesity (OW/OB). Differently from the HW group, the OW/OB group explicitly liked food odors less than non-food odors; but, at the implicit level, there were no differences in heart rate response for both types of odors, indicating that they were equally liked. Moreover, at variance with the HW group, the OW/OB group did not exhibit increased skin conductance response for food compared to nonfood odors. Alexithymia was associated with increased implicit liking and explicit wanting of food odors, in particular in the HW group. These findings show that obesity is characterized by high levels of implicit food liking and low levels of implicit food wanting. Moreover, both affective and motivational responses to food reward seem to be affected by alexithymia, which should be taken into account by studies evaluating the effect of cue exposure intervention for obesity treatment.
169
105827
Cecchetto, C; Pisanu, E; Schopf, V; Rumiati, R I; Aiello, M
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11767/128615
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