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Disordered eating and difficulties with emotion regulation have shown strong associations but there has been little attention paid to possible mediators that would explain this relationship. In depression and anxiety, negative memory and interpretation biases are implicated in the onset and maintenance of these disorders, however, little is known about whether these biases also exist in eating disorders, and if they are related to difficulties with emotion regulation. Females (n = 181) aged 17–26 years, completed self-report measures of disordered eating and behaviours, difficulties in emotion regulation, depression, anxiety, and memory and interpretation bias. While negative memory bias was related to objective binge episodes, it was not related to difficulties in emotion regulation. Negative interpretation biases were associated with higher levels of eating psychopathology and objective binge eating when controlling for depression and anxiety. Cross-sectional testing showed this bias to mediate the relationship between both measures of disordered eating and difficulties with emotion regulation. Findings support further research into the effectiveness of cognitive bias modification techniques with respect to disordered eating and the reduction of emotion regulation difficulties.
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- The Relationship Between Memory and Interpretation Biases, Difficulties with Emotion Regulation, and Disordered Eating in Young Women
Jane L. Cooper
Tracey D. Wade
- Springer US