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Physiol Behav. 2019 Jul 1;206:185-190. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2019.04.007. Epub 2019 Apr 10.

Motivation to eat and not to eat - The psycho-biological conflict in anorexia nervosa.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, USA; Department of Neuroscience, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, USA. Electronic address: Guido.Frank@ucdenver.edu.
2
Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, USA; Department of Neuroscience, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, USA.
3
Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, School of Medicine, Aurora, CO, USA.

Abstract

Anorexia nervosa is a severe psychiatric illness with high mortality. Brain imaging research has indicated altered reward circuits in the disorder. Here we propose a disease model for anorexia nervosa, supported by recent studies, that integrates psychological and biological factors. In that model, we propose that there is a conflict between the conscious motivation to restrict food, and a body-homeostasis driven motivation to approach food in response to weight loss. These opposing motivations trigger anxiety, which maintains the vicious cycle of ongoing energy restriction and weight loss.

KEYWORDS:

Anorexia nervosa; Anxiety; Brain; Conflict; Motivation

PMID:
30980856
PMCID:
PMC6520121
[Available on 2020-07-01]
DOI:
10.1016/j.physbeh.2019.04.007
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