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Food is all the love we can eat - attachment orientation, overeating and obesity

Mood Disorders Centre Think Tank Seminar Series

A Mood Disorders Centre seminar
Date29 January 2021
Time12:00 to 13:00
PlaceThe Sir Henry Wellcome Building for Mood Disorders Research

Our guest speaker is Laura Wilkinson of Swansea University.


Research has shown that adult attachment orientation (expectations of ourselves and others in interpersonal relationships) is a predictor of eating behaviour and body mass index (BMI). Specifically, poor attachment orientation (insecurity) is associated with greater overeating behaviours and higher BMI. The prevailing view is that attachment insecure individuals are poorer at emotion regulation and therefore use eating as a way to manage negative emotion. Given this relationship, one possibility that has been explored is that attachment orientation can explain some of the variability in weight-loss outcomes following intervention (including bariatric-metabolic surgery) and may provide a way to manage the possibility of poor outcomes. In this talk, I will discuss the evidence and the opportunities associated with this approach and the movement to make relevant clinics ‘attachment-informed’. I will also discuss the limitations of this approach and outstanding questions for the research community.
OrganizerMood Disorders Centre

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