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Aug 8, 2019

WCP-2019

The Effect of High Reward Sensitivity on Impaired Appetitive Learning in Individuals with Obesity

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obesity

appetitive learning

reward sensitivity

food learning

hunger

Abstract

Abstract

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Keywords

obesity

appetitive learning

reward sensitivity

food learning

hunger

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to test whether reward sensitivity is related to impaired discriminative and reversal appetitive learning in individuals with obesity. High reward sensitivity may make deficits in accurate and flexible learning between cue and food which results into increased eating in the absence of hunger. A total of 120 obese and normal-weight participants based on body mass index and reward sensitivity level were recruited from C University hospital. They were classified into four groups on the basis of their behavioral activation system (High, Low). Upon arrival, participants took an appetitive reversal learning task that asks them to learn and modify the association between two colored squares and chocolate reward and rated the expectation degree to see food, following presentation of a colored square on each trial. 2x2 ANOVA analysis revealed that the interaction between group and reward sensitivity. In other words, obese individuals with high reward sensitivity were not able to discriminate the food predictive cue from the other cue and to update the stimulus values after the changes made in reward contingencies. These findings indicate that obesity may be linked to impaired reward-based discriminative and reversal appetitive learning and that this impairment is more severe with characteristic of reward sensitivity. This study has implication on recognizing individual difference in appetitive learning with reward sensitivity and guiding obesity treatment, in that the obese with high reward sensitivity needs to adjust their stimulus-reward response using prolonged exposure therapy.

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© Copyright 2019 Morressier GmbH.
All rights reserved.