'I can't accept that feeling': Relationships between interoceptive awareness, mindfulness and eating disorder symptoms in females with, and at-risk of an eating disorder.

Author: Lattimore P1, Mead BR2, Irwin L3, Grice L4, Carson R3, Malinowski P4
1School of Natural Sciences & Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK. Electronic address: p.j.lattimore@ljmu.ac.uk.
2Institute of Psychology, Health & Society, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK.
3Mersey Care NHS Trust, Liverpool, UK.
4School of Natural Sciences & Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, UK.
Conference/Journal: Psychiatry Res.
Date published: 2016 Nov 16
Other: Volume ID: 247 , Pages: 163-171 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2016.11.022. [Epub ahead of print] , Word Count: 220

Mindfulness based therapies (MBTs) for eating disorders show potential benefit for outcomes yet evidence is scarce regarding the mechanisms by which they influence remission from symptoms. One way that mindfulness approaches create positive outcomes is through enhancement of emotion regulation skills. Maladaptive emotion regulation is a key psychological feature of all eating disorders. The aim of the current study was to identify facets of emotion regulation involved in the relationship between mindfulness and maladaptive eating behaviours. In three cross-sectional studies, clinical (n=39) and non-clinical (n=137 and 119) female participants completed: 1) the Eating Disorder Inventory (EDI) eating specific scales (drive-for-thinness and bulimia) and the EDI psychological symptom scales (emotion dysregulation and interoceptive deficits); and 2) mindfulness, impulsivity, and emotion regulation questionnaires. In all samples mindfulness was significantly and inversely associated with EDI eating and psychological symptom scales, and impulsivity. In non-clinical samples interoceptive deficits mediated the relationship between mindfulness and EDI eating specific scales. Non-acceptance of emotional experience, a facet of interoceptive awareness, mediated the relationship between mindfulness and eating specific EDI scores. Further investigations could verify relationships identified so that mindfulness based approaches can be optimised to enhance emotion regulation skills in sufferers, and those at-risk, of eating disorders.

Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

KEYWORDS: Anorexia; Bulimia; Emotion (dys-) regulation; Impulsivity; Interoceptive; Mindfulness

PMID: 27915166 DOI: 10.1016/j.psychres.2016.11.022