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A review of the relationship between eating behavior, obesity and functional brain network organization

Donofry, S.D., Stillman, C.M. and Erickson, K.I. (2019) A review of the relationship between eating behavior, obesity and functional brain network organization. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 15 (10). pp. 1157-1181.

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Obesity is a major public health issue affecting nearly 40% of American adults and is associated with increased mortality and elevated risk for a number of physical and psychological illnesses. Obesity is associated with impairments in executive functions such as decision making and inhibitory control, as well as in reward valuation, which is thought to contribute to difficulty sustaining healthy lifestyle behaviors, including adhering to a healthy diet. Growing evidence indicates that these impairments are accompanied by disruptions in functional brain networks, particularly those that support self-regulation, reward valuation, self-directed thinking and homeostatic control. Weight-related differences in task-evoked and resting-state connectivity have most frequently been noted in the executive control network (ECN), salience network (SN) and default mode network (DMN), with obesity generally being associated with weakened connectivity in the ECN and enhanced connectivity in the SN and DMN. Similar disruptions have been observed in the much smaller literature examining the relationship between diet and disordered eating behaviors on functional network organization. The purpose of this narrative review was to summarize what is currently known about how obesity and eating behavior relate to functional brain networks, describe common patterns and provide recommendations for future research based on the identified gaps in knowledge.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Psychology, Counselling, Exercise Science and Chiropractic
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Copyright: © 2020 Oxford University Press
United Nations SDGs: Goal 3: Good Health and Well-Being
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