Eating too much or too little : an FMRI food reward study of (ab)normal eating behaviour

N. Siep

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisInternal

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This research studied by means of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) which influence the factors caloric density, hunger, attention and cognitive control have on the activity in the reward system. Attention and cognitive control appeared to have the greatest influence. When the participants were shown tasty food and for example aimed their attention at a neutral aspect, the activity in the reward circuit disappeared. When they thought about the tastiness of the food, the activity raised. If you want to change eating behaviour, it’s important that you learn to think differently about eating. Finally, the results showed that Anorexia Nervosa (AN) patients had serious disorders in the reward circuit: as opposed to healthy participants, the AN patients showed hardly any activity in the reward circuit when they saw tasty food. Therefore, it is important that future treatments are focused on repairing this reward circuit.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Maastricht University
  • Jansen, Anita, Supervisor
  • Roefs, Anne, Co-Supervisor
  • Roebroeck, Alard, Co-Supervisor
Award date4 Nov 2010
Place of PublicationMaastricht
Print ISBNs9789052789842
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010


  • fMRI
  • attraction of food
  • reward system
  • Anorexia Nervosa

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