Serving Size Guidance for Consumers: Is It Effective?

Serving size guidance for consumers: is it effective?

Filed under: Eating Disorders

Proc Nutr Soc. 2012 Aug 9; 1-12
Faulkner GP, Pourshahidi LK, Wallace JM, Kerr MA, McCrorie TA, Livingstone MB

Larger portion sizes (PS) may be inciting over-eating and contributing to obesity rates. Currently, there is a paucity of data on the effectiveness of serving size (SS) guidance. The aims of the present review are to evaluate SS guidance; the understanding, usability and acceptability of such guidance, its impact on consumers and potential barriers to its uptake. A sample of worldwide SS guidance schemes (n 87) were identified using targeted and untargeted searches, overall these were found to communicate various inconsistent and often conflicting messages about PS selection. The available data suggest that consumers have difficulty in understanding terms such as ‘portion size’ and ‘serving size’, as these tend to be used interchangeably. In addition, discrepancies between recommended SS and those present on food labels add to the confusion. Consumers generally understand and visualise SS best when expressed in terms of household measures rather than actual weights. Only a limited number of studies have examined the direct impact of SS guidance on consumer behaviour with equivocal results. Although consumers recognise that guidance on selecting SS would be helpful, they are often unwilling to act on such guidance. The challenge of achieving consumer adherence to SS guidance is formidable due to several barriers including chronic exposure to larger PS, distorted consumption norms and perceptions, the habit of ‘cleaning one’s plate’ and language barriers for ethnic minorities. In conclusion, the impact of SS guidance on consumers merits further investigation to ensure that future guidance resonates with consumers by being more understandable, usable and acceptable.
HubMed – eating


Effectiveness of cognitive remediation therapy (CRT) in anorexia nervosa: A case series.

Filed under: Eating Disorders

J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 2012 Aug 10;
Abbate-Daga G, Buzzichelli S, Marzola E, Amianto F, Fassino S

We investigated whether cognitive remediation therapy (CRT) is effective in improving cognitive flexibility in anorexia nervosa (AN). Twenty AN outpatients were consecutively recruited at the Eating Disorders Center of the Turin University. All participants completed 10 sessions of CRT. Neuropsychological performances improved with CRT. Data showed also a significant improvement of impulse regulation and interoceptive awareness (subscales of the Eating Disorders Inventory-2). CRT was also associated with improvement of reflexive skills and awareness. These preliminary findings are promising, but further work is necessary to find ways of enhancing the effects of this treatment.
HubMed – eating


Communicating Stigma: The Pro-Ana Paradox.

Filed under: Eating Disorders

Health Commun. 2012 Aug 8;
Yeshua-Katz D, Martins N

This study explores the personal experience of pro-ana bloggers, members of an online community for people with eating disorders. Using Erving Goffman’s work on stigma, this study explores the motivations, benefits, and drawbacks of blogging about a stigmatized mental illness, as taken from the bloggers’ own perceptive. We conducted 33 interviews with bloggers from seven different countries via phone, Skype, and e-mail. Participants were motivated to blog because they found social support, a way to cope with a stigmatized illness, and means of self-expression. Participants described blogging as a cathartic experience and perceived the social support they received from other members of the pro-ana community as a benefit. The fear that the eating disorder will be revealed if the blog is exposed and the concern that the blog encourages disordered eating were the perceived negative consequences of maintaining such a blog. Thus, blogging about anorexia serves to both alleviate and trigger anxiety about living with this stigmatized illness. Recommendations for future research are made.
HubMed – eating


Coping behaviour as an adaptation to stress: post-disturbance preening in colonial seabirds.

Filed under: Eating Disorders

J Biol Dyn. 2012 Jan; 6(1): 17-37
Henson SM, Weldon LM, Hayward JL, Greene DJ, Megna LC, Serem MC

In humans, coping behaviour is an action taken to soothe oneself during or after a stressful or threatening situation. Some human behaviours with physiological functions also serve as coping behaviours, for example, comfort sucking in infants and comfort eating in adults. In birds, the behaviour of preening, which has important physiological functions, has been postulated to soothe individuals after stressful situations. We combine two existing modelling approaches – logistic regression and Darwinian dynamics – to explore theoretically how a behaviour with crucial physiological function might evolve into a coping behaviour. We apply the method to preening in colonial seabirds to investigate whether and how preening might be co-opted as a coping behaviour in the presence of predators. We conduct an in-depth study of the environmental correlates of preening in a large gull colony in Washington, USA, and we perform an independent field test for comfort preening by computing the change in frequency of preening in gulls that were alerted to a predator, but did not flee.
HubMed – eating



THIN – Eating disorders – Part 2 – THIN, directed by Lauren Greenfield and distributed by HBO, is an exploration of The Renfrew Center in Coconut Creek, Florida; a 40-bed residential facility for the treatment of women with eating disorders. The film mostly revolves around four women with anorexia nervosa and/or bulimia and their struggles for recovery.


Find More Eating Disorders Information…