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Cue-elicited anxiety and craving for food using virtual reality scenarios.

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  • 1Universitat de Barcelona.


Cue exposure therapy has been reported to be an effective intervention for reducing binge eating behavior in patients with eating disorders and obesity. However, in vivo food exposure conducted in the therapist's office presents logistical problems and lacks ecological validity. This study proposes the use of virtual reality technology as an alternative to in vivo exposure, and assesses the ability of different virtual environments to elicit anxiety and craving for food in a non-clinical sample. The results show that exposure to virtual environments provokes changes in reported craving for food. High-calorie food cues are the ones that elicit the highest increases in craving.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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