Objective: Obesity is rising globally with a heavy health and economic burden. Early attachment experiences are relevant to the development of obesity. The purpose of this study was to investigate if parental care and attachment style experienced in childhood is associated with obesity, with or without binge eating disorder (BED), in adulthood. Method: Parental style, personality traits, and psychopathology were assessed in 810 clinically referred adults with obesity, of whom 357 with BED and 453 without BED (non-BED), and 463 healthy subjects (HS). Assessments included the Parental Bonding Instrument, Temperament and Character Inventory, Eating Disorder Inventory-2, Symptom Checklist-90 and Beck Depression Inventory-II. Results: Both BED and non-BED reported lower maternal and paternal care and higher overprotection than HS. BED reported worse levels of parental care than non-BED and HS. ‘Affectionless control’ parenting style was more frequently reported by both BED and non-BED than HS. No significant differences in parenting style emerged between BED and non-BED. Conclusions: Perception of parental ‘affectionless control’ was associated with obesity in adults, and lower quality of parental care was more frequently reported by participants with BED. Parental style may constitute an important target for early interventions to prevent obesity.

Affectionless control: A parenting style associated with obesity and binge eating disorder in adulthood

Amianto F.
First
;
Martini M.;Olandese F.;Davico C.;Abbate-Daga G.;Fassino S.;Vitiello B.
2021-01-01

Abstract

Objective: Obesity is rising globally with a heavy health and economic burden. Early attachment experiences are relevant to the development of obesity. The purpose of this study was to investigate if parental care and attachment style experienced in childhood is associated with obesity, with or without binge eating disorder (BED), in adulthood. Method: Parental style, personality traits, and psychopathology were assessed in 810 clinically referred adults with obesity, of whom 357 with BED and 453 without BED (non-BED), and 463 healthy subjects (HS). Assessments included the Parental Bonding Instrument, Temperament and Character Inventory, Eating Disorder Inventory-2, Symptom Checklist-90 and Beck Depression Inventory-II. Results: Both BED and non-BED reported lower maternal and paternal care and higher overprotection than HS. BED reported worse levels of parental care than non-BED and HS. ‘Affectionless control’ parenting style was more frequently reported by both BED and non-BED than HS. No significant differences in parenting style emerged between BED and non-BED. Conclusions: Perception of parental ‘affectionless control’ was associated with obesity in adults, and lower quality of parental care was more frequently reported by participants with BED. Parental style may constitute an important target for early interventions to prevent obesity.
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affectionless control; attachment; binge-eating disorder; obesity; prevention
Amianto F.; Martini M.; Olandese F.; Davico C.; Abbate-Daga G.; Fassino S.; Vitiello B.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/1768598
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