Accepting or suppressing the desire to eat: Investigating the short-term effects of acceptance-based craving regulation

H.J.E.M. Alberts, R. Thewissen, M. Middelweerd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Previous studies addressing the long-term impact of acceptance of food cravings have revealed positive effects in terms of reduced craving experience. The present study investigated the short-term (direct) consequences of acceptance-based craving regulation. Hungry participants were exposed to desirable food and were either instructed to accept or suppress food cravings during exposure. Control participants did not regulate cravings and were allowed to eat from the food. Participants who accepted food cravings reported a significant increase in food craving during the course of the experiment. Participants who suppressed their cravings during exposure kept their craving levels constant. In contrast, control participants who were allowed to eat from the food, reported a significant drop in cravings. These findings suggest that although acceptance may entail an effective strategy for reducing food cravings in the long run, it may require repeated practice to overcome the immediate counterproductive effects. (c) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)405-409
Number of pages5
JournalEating Behaviors
Volume14
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013

Keywords

  • Acceptance
  • Suppression
  • Mindfulness
  • Food craving
  • COMMITMENT THERAPY
  • FOOD-CRAVINGS
  • CUE EXPOSURE
  • RESPONSES
  • INTERVENTION
  • SALIVATION
  • RESTRAINT
  • DISORDER
  • EMOTION
  • ANXIETY

Cite this