Document Detail

Alexithymia and eating behaviour in severely obese patients.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20487173     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Alexithymia is the inability to express feelings with words and comprises a psychological construct frequently found in obese individuals. In eating disordered patients who show a tendency to lose control over food intake, personality traits with alexithymic characteristics have been demonstrated. The present cross-sectional study investigated the relationships between alexithymia and eating behaviour in severely obese patients.
METHODS: This study analysed 150 obese patients undergoing bariatric surgery and 132 subjects at more than 1 year after biliopancreatic diversion (BPD), when body weight has steadily normalised and any preoccupation with weight, food and diet has been completely abandoned. Obese and operated subjects completed the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS), and eating behaviour was assessed via a semi-structured interview exploring binge eating disorder (BED), night eating and emotional eating, as well as by utilisation of the Three Factor Eating Questionnaire (TFEQ).
RESULTS: Although alexithymic patients showed deranged eating behaviour, as evaluated by the TFEQ scores, the frequency of BED, night eating and emotional eating was similar in alexithymic (TAS > 60) and non-alexithymic patients. However, the prevalence of alexithymia was similar in obese and BPD subjects, whereas, in the operated subjects, TFEQ scores were lower (P < 0.005) than those in obese patients.
CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that, in severely obese patients, alexithymia does not influence eating behaviour; in severely obese patients, the tendency to lose control over food intake apparently represents a psychological construct that is substantially independent from alexithymia.
G Noli; M Cornicelli; G M Marinari; F Carlini; N Scopinaro; G F Adami
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of human nutrition and dietetics : the official journal of the British Dietetic Association     Volume:  23     ISSN:  1365-277X     ISO Abbreviation:  J Hum Nutr Diet     Publication Date:  2010 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-11-05     Completed Date:  2011-01-28     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8904840     Medline TA:  J Hum Nutr Diet     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  616-9     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Surgery, University of Genova, Genova, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Affective Symptoms / complications*,  epidemiology,  psychology*
Bariatric Surgery
Biliopancreatic Diversion
Binge-Eating Disorder / epidemiology
Eating Disorders / epidemiology,  psychology
Feeding Behavior / psychology*
Middle Aged
Obesity / complications*,  psychology*,  surgery

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