Phenotypic Integration in a Series of Trophic Traits: Tracing the Evolution of Myrmecophagy in Spiders (Araneae).

Phenotypic integration in a series of trophic traits: tracing the evolution of myrmecophagy in spiders (Araneae).

Filed under: Eating Disorders

Zoology (Jena). 2012 Nov 19;
Pekár S, Michalko R, Korenko S, Sedo O, Líznarová E, Sentenská L, Zdráhal Z

Several hypotheses have been put forward to explain the evolution of prey specificity (stenophagy). Yet little light has so far been shed on the process of evolution of stenophagy in carnivorous predators. We performed a detailed analysis of a variety of trophic adaptations in one species. Our aim was to determine whether a specific form of stenophagy, myrmecophagy, has evolved from euryphagy via parallel changes in several traits from pre-existing characters. For that purpose, we studied the trophic niche and morphological, behavioural, venomic and physiological adaptations in a euryphagous spider, Selamia reticulata. It is a species that is branching off earlier in phylogeny than stenophagous ant-eating spiders of the genus Zodarion (both Zodariidae). The natural diet was wide and included ants. Laboratory feeding trials revealed versatile prey capture strategies that are effective on ants and other prey types. The performance of spiders on two different diets – ants only and mixed insects – failed to reveal differences in most fitness components (survival and developmental rate). However, the weight increase was significantly higher in spiders on the mixed diet. As a result, females on a mixed diet had higher fecundity and oviposited earlier. No differences were found in incubation period, hatching success or spiderling size. S. reticulata possesses a more diverse venom composition than Zodarion. Its venom is more effective for the immobilisation of beetle larvae than of ants. Comparative analysis of morphological traits related to myrmecophagy in the family Zodariidae revealed that their apomorphic states appeared gradually along the phylogeny to derived prey-specialised genera. Our results suggest that myrmecophagy has evolved gradually from the ancestral euryphagous strategy by integrating a series of trophic traits.
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‘Treats’, ‘sometimes foods’, ‘junk’: a qualitative study exploring ‘extra foods’ with parents of young children.

Filed under: Eating Disorders

Public Health Nutr. 2012 Nov 27; 1-8
Petrunoff NA, Wilkenfeld RL, King LA, Flood VM

OBJECTIVE: The present study investigated parents’ understanding and approaches to providing energy-dense and nutrient-poor ‘extra foods’ to pre-school children and explored variation between parents of low and high socio-economic status in relation to these issues. DESIGN: We conducted thirteen focus groups. Data were subject to framework analysis. SETTING: Child-care centres in distinctly socially disadvantaged and socially advantaged areas. SUBJECTS: Eighty-eight parents of children aged 3-5 years. RESULTS: The three most common terms parents identified to describe foods that are not ‘everyday foods’ were ‘treats’, ‘sometimes foods’ and ‘junk’. Parents’ perceptions regarding what influences them in providing food to their children included seven sub-themes: (i) the influence of the child; (ii) food-related parenting practices; (iii) health considerations; (iv) food costs and convenience; (v) external factors perceived as influencing their child; (vi) factors related to child care; and (vii) social influences and occasions. Parents’ decision-making processes regarding provision of ‘extra foods’ related to moderation and balance. Parents generally expressed the position that as long as a child is eating healthy foods, then treats are appropriate; and for many parents, this might apply frequently. All groups described the health of their child as an influence, but parents in low socio-economic groups were more likely to describe immediate concerns (dental health, behaviour) in relation to avoiding sugar-dense food or drink. CONCLUSIONS: The belief that provision of ‘extra foods’ can be frequent as long as children are eating a healthy balance of foods is factored into parents’ decision making. Challenging this belief may be important for reducing the consumption of ‘extra foods’ by young children.
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Barriers to avoiding fast-food consumption in an environment supportive of unhealthy eating.

Filed under: Eating Disorders

Public Health Nutr. 2012 Nov 27; 1-9
Thornton LE, Jeffery RW, Crawford DA

OBJECTIVE: To investigate factors (ability, motivation and the environment) that act as barriers to limiting fast-food consumption in women who live in an environment that is supportive of poor eating habits. DESIGN: Cross-sectional study using self-reports of individual-level data and objectively measured environmental data. Multilevel logistic regression was used to assess factors associated with frequency of fast-food consumption. SETTING: Socio-economically disadvantaged areas in metropolitan Melbourne, Australia. SUBJECTS: Women (n 932) from thirty-two socio-economically disadvantaged neighbourhoods living within 3 km of six or more fast-food restaurants. Women were randomly sampled in 2007-2008 as part of baseline data collection for the Resilience for Eating and Activity Despite Inequality (READI) study. RESULTS: Consuming low amounts of fast food was less likely in women with lower perceived ability to shop for and cook healthy foods, lower frequency of family dining, lower family support for healthy eating, more women acquaintances who eat fast food regularly and who lived further from the nearest supermarket. When modelled with the other significant factors, a lower perceived shopping ability, mid levels of family support and living further from the nearest supermarket remained significant. Among those who did not perceive fruits and vegetables to be of high quality, less frequent fast-food consumption was further reduced for those with the lowest confidence in their shopping ability. CONCLUSIONS: Interventions designed to improve women’s ability and opportunities to shop for healthy foods may be of value in making those who live in high-risk environments better able to eat healthily.
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Exploring the integration of thin-ideal internalization and self-objectification in the prevention of eating disorders.

Filed under: Eating Disorders

Body Image. 2012 Nov 19;
Kroon Van Diest AM, Perez M

Analyses of thin-ideal internalization and self-objectification were conducted within the context of a cognitive dissonance based eating disorder prevention program implemented in an undergraduate sorority. Participants completed self-report assessments at baseline (n=177), post-intervention (n=169), 5-month (n=159), and 1-year follow-up (n=105). Cross-sectional path analysis indicated that thin-ideal internalization and self-objectification predict each other and both predict body dissatisfaction, which in turn, predicts eating disorder symptoms. A longitudinal examination conducted using hierarchical linear modeling indicated that participants showed significant reductions in thin-ideal internalization, self-objectification, body dissatisfaction, and eating disorder symptoms after participating in the prevention program. Reductions of symptoms were maintained 1-year post-intervention, with the exception of self-objectification, which was significantly reduced up to 5-months post-intervention. Collectively, results suggest that targeting both thin-ideal internalization and self-objectification simultaneously within eating disorder prevention programs could increase the reduction of eating disorder symptoms.
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OVERCOMING the STIGMA of an ED! – Eating Disorder Video #38 – I know that many of us have worried about people finding out about our eating disorders or have had certain people judge us because we have or have had one. How do we deal with it? How do we make sure that people are not judging us and assuming other things because of our ED? We talk about it! We share the information! We tell them how it is for us and what we know about EDs! There are 8 million people who suffer from eating disorders!! We are not alone! I know that what I am asking you to do can be very scary, but as a group we have the ability to break the stigma. I am only one voice, but together we can reach so many. Wouldn’t it be nice to one day feel that we could speak to others about our struggles and concerns whether it is an ED or just life in general? If we could be honest with those around us about it and enlist them in our support team. I know that what I am asking you to do goes against everything that your ED tells you, but we all know that the longer we keep something a secret, the more power it has over us. So I challenge each of you to just do one thing. Share this video on your Facebook page, like it, tweet about it, pin it. There are a million ways to share things now, let’s take advantage of it. I promise to continue to put out new and relevant information, as we all work together towards a healthy mind and a healthy body. Kati Morton, MFTI Website Twitter Tumblr: Facebook: www


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