Welcome to Sandra Backovich, MA, MFT




"Have you thought that talking to someone about life's challenges might help? Face your challenges with helpful psychology, a sympathetic ear and zero judgement." Call (415) 921-3426

I have a general practice. This means I can be of help with most problems. Below is a list of issues with which I have expertise to help you. Depression, anxiety, relationship issues in all kinds of relationships (spousal, family, work, friends, dating),trauma and post traumatic stress disorder, disordered eating through out the life span (eating disorders), self esteem adoption, parenting, grief and loss.

If you are not sure or don't see your problem listed please contact me and we can talk about it. I may be able to find you a referral if I don�t think I can be of help. I also have an office in Berkeley in addition to my San Francisco location.




How I Work

Whether suffering from loss, struggling with depression, fighting an eating disorder, or experiencing distress in relationships, I help my clients effectively share and work with unresolved emotional pain, seeking to explore deeper core issues that will allow healing, self acceptance and change.

We begin with building safety and security in our therapeutic, as well as real, connection through my attunement and attention to your needs and emotions. I pay close watch over what occurs between us and in ourselves, to arrive at the emotional and relational issues that we need to work with together.The healing occurs because of and within the therapeutic relationship as we explore issues that have compromised how you live your life. Through our work together, which includes support, understanding, genuine, honest feedback and attunement to the deeper core states of emotions, we will awaken in you old and new capacities allowing you to be who you are.




Sandra Backovich

I have been providing psychotherapy to adults and adolescents for 20+ years. My style is non-judgmental, interactive and collaborative. Establishing a warm and respectful connection makes it less difficult to discuss what you are facing and allows you to access the strengths you already have. Working to establish this is my first priority. Call 415-921-3426


Scroll down for research articles about eating disorders.


About Relationships:

About Relationships click here


Relationships, educational articles, and research

Relationship articles


2017 Website Click here


NowUKnow: Why Millennials Refuse to Get Married
by Meg Murphy Bentley University

TOPICS
Millennials
Millennials are saying no to traditional marriage in record numbers…and
that’s not all. In Western culture in the late 18th century, marriage
transformed from an economic arrangement into a union based on love.
Now it may again be heading toward radical change.

Marriage Rates Are Plummeting
The median age at first marriage is now 27 for women and 29 for men
— up from 20 for women and 23 for men in 1960.

The median age at first marriage is now 27 for women and 29 for men
Today an unprecedented portion of millennials will remain unmarried
through age 40, a recent Urban Institute report predicted. The marriage
rate might drop to 70 percent -- a figure well below rates for boomers
(91 percent), late boomers (87 percent) and Gen Xers (82 percent).
And declines might be even sharper if marriage rates recover slowly,
or not at all, from pre-recession levels, according to the report.

Traditional marriage has been on a downward trajectory for generations,
but with this group it appears to be in free fall. According to a report
released last month by the Pew Research Center, 25 percent of millennials
are likely to never be married. That would be the highest share in modern history.

The Impact of Not Getting Married

Boston Globe columnist Tom Keane says this trend could be cause for alarm.
"Millennials, reject timely marriage at your own risk," warns his column.
“Not getting married at all could prove tragic,” said Keane, reviewing
the economic and social benefits of marriage. Marriage patterns will continue
to diverge by education and race, increasing the divides between mostly married
“haves” and increasingly single “have-nots,” predicted an internal analysis
of the Urban Institute report. Tax rates, eligibility for entitlement programs,
and the availability of social safety nets are all altered by marital status,
it said. Current marriage trends will make it challenging to develop policies
that efficiently target the needs of the growing number of unmarried poor, it said.

“To me, there are so many things that encourage people to marry for financial
reasons," said Steven Weisman, a lawyer who teaches a class on "Marriage,
Separation and Divorce" class at Bentley University, in a Baltimore Sun article.
From Social Security to income taxes, married couples benefit economically.
Click here for the
full report


More than a million Millennials
are becoming moms each year
BY GRETCHEN LIVINGSTON Pew Research Center

Some 1.3 million Millennial women gave birth for the first time in 2015,
according to recently released data from the National Center for Health
Statistics, raising the total number of U.S. women in this generation who
have become mothers to more than 16 million.

All told, Millennial women (those born from 1981 to 1997) accounted for
about eight-in-ten (82%) U.S. births in 2015. At the same time, Millennials
make up 31% of the adult U.S. population, and just over a third (34%) of
the U.S. workforce.

While they now account for the vast majority of annual U.S. births,
Millennial women are waiting longer to become parents than prior generations
did. Among Millennial women ages 18 to 33 in 2014, for instance, 42%
were moms. But when women from Generation X – those born between 1965
and 1980 – were in the same age range, 49% were already moms, according to
a Pew Research Center analysis of the Census Bureau’s Current Population
Survey data. (The rising age at first birth is hardly limited to the Millennial
generation. It has been a trend since at least 1970. Many factors may contribute,
including a shift away from marriage, increasing educational attainment and the
movement of women into the labor force.)

While Millennials may be delaying parenthood, it’s not for a lack of interest
in eventually becoming moms and dads. Members of this generation rated being a
good parent as a top priority in a 2010 Pew Research Center survey. Some 52%
said it was one of the most important goals in their lives, well ahead of having
a successful marriage, which 30% said was one of their most important lifetime goals.

Regardless of which generation they belong to, parents say having children is
central to their identity. Among Millennials, six-in-ten (60%) said that being
a parent is extremely important to their overall identity, according to a 2015
Pew Research Center survey. A similar share of Gen X parents said as much (58%),
as did a slightly smaller share (51%) of Baby Boomers with children younger than 18.

Click here for the full report


OdonataWellness/Pexels Five Ways to Ruin a Perfectly Good Relationship
By Susan Krauss Whitbourne Ph.D.
on January 24, 2017 In Fulfillment at Any Age

Relationships that seem to be going well may, without your knowledge, be
in trouble. New research on narcissism in relationships shows how to avoid
the 5 most common traps.

You believe that your close relationship with your partner is a happy one,
and that your partner is as content as you are. Or perhaps there’s a
coworker with whom you’ve always gotten along well, and you feel safe
in the knowledge that there’s a groundwork in mutual trust. However,
what if things aren’t really going that well? What if you’ve been doing
something that drives your relationship partner or coworker absolutely
nuts? Maybe that relationship isn’t as secure as you believe it to be
after all. Perhaps all of us have somewhat of a blind eye to our flaws
and therefore don’t realize that the eyes of our nearest and dearest aren’t
that blind. New research on people high in narcissistic traits shows just
how off-base our perceptions can be of the quality of these relationships.

According to Albright College’s Gwendolyn Seidman (2016), most people value
warmth and loyalty—the intrinsic qualities to a relationship—than the status,
attractiveness or even passion of their partners—the extrinsic qualities.
Warmth and loyalty are the qualities you can only find in certain specific
people, and they are at the core of the relationship. Status, attractiveness
and passion are qualities that are interchangeable among partners.
They do not represent the unique qualities of that person or persons you
care about the most. If these extrinsic qualities are what you seek, then
you’ll be less likely to see your partner, coworkers, or friends for what
they and they alone can bring to the relationship.

What can happen when you believe your relationship to be on an even keel
when it’s not is that you inadvertently fail to connect with the intrinsic
features of the other person in the relationship. You get distracted by the
superficial features of the relationship, such as whether your partner is
attractive or fun enough for you. You forget what drew you to your partner
in the first place. It’s also possible that you take for granted the very
qualities that form a bond between you and your partner. At that point,
you are on your way to ruining a perfectly good relationship without
intending to do so.

Click here to read the full research report


The Marriage Crisis
How marriage has changed
in the last 50 years
and why it continues to decline
by AJA GABEL

Click here for the article


The Impact of Texting on Perceptions of Face-to-Face
Communication in Couples in Different Relationship Stages


Click for the report


Research on what makes a marriage work shows that
people in a good marriage have completed these psychological "tasks"

by: American Psychological Association

Click here for the report




How to Listen with All Four of Your Ears
New research shows how to get your ears to listen
through all their channels.
Posted Jan 17, 2017 Susan Krauss Whitbourne Ph.D.

Your communication to others may depend on which message
you're hoping they receive.

When we think about communication, we generally divide it
into two categories-verbal and nonverbal behavior. But, according
to the "four ear" model of communication, we speak and listen
through four separate channels. The question is, when you
communicate through one of those channels, what will your
listener hear? A new study that used behavioral neuroscience
to investigate the factors that influence how your message
is received focused on the role of the hormonal neurotransmitter,
oxytocin. Although it's based in neuroscience, this study provides
an understanding of how to make sure your listeners actually
hear what you want them to hear.

University of Munich's Michaela Pfundmair and colleagues (2016) based
their work on the four-ear model theory, which proposes that each
verbal message contains four different dimensions of communication:

Read the full article
from Psychology today.com



Is This the Surprising Way Couples Will Become Less Insular?
By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on January 18, 2017 in Living Single
The community that was creating and honoring "families of choice"
long before the concept became broadly familiar may be the
one to transform coupling.



There was a time when couples were not so enmeshed. In my parents'
generation, my mother could spend time with her siblings and friends,
and my father with his work buddies, without either thinking that the
time they spent in their own social circles constituted any sort of
threat to their marriage.

Then, perhaps as an odd byproduct of growing equality between the sexes,
couples began looking to each other to fulfill just about all their emotional,
interpersonal, and practical needs. In my book Singled Out, I called them
Sex and Everything Else Partners, or "seepies"-"the twosomes who look to each
other for companionship, intimacy, caring, friendship, advice, the sharing of
the tasks and finances of household and family, and just about everything else.
They are the repositories for each other's hopes and dreams. They are each
other's soul mates and sole mates."

Click here for the full article


52 Ways to Show I Love You - #4 Listening
Careful attention to more than the words of a message promotes intimacy
Posted Jan 22, 2017 Roni Beth Tower Ph.D., ABPP Roni Beth Tower Ph.D., ABPP


This morning my husband and I had one of our rare fights. He asked me
if I had seen anything interesting during my online skim of The New
York Times morning headlines. I began to describe my reaction to
an Op-Ed piece written by Alexa O'Brien about Amazon's use of the helper
technology that shares her name, a reference to the Greek goddess who defends
and protects. I was explaining what Ms. O'Brien had written, along with
how and why I had reacted to it. David interrupted me, eager to show what
he thought he understood about what I was talking about. His motivation
was pure - he was excited to engage in dialogue. Today's electronically-mediated
conversation had left him feeling cut off from real-life up-and-back with
people whose body language he could reliably translate. Most of all,
he wanted to re-establish contact with me, his beloved wife, and to show
me that he was available to share a bit of worldly news or opinion.
(See last week's post on Sharing as a way of showing love.)

In his eagerness, however, he failed to take the time to listen to what
I was actually saying. His need to contribute, to show me that he was
paying attention, and to engage, cut off the very exchange that I was
trying to initiate. In the Introduction to this year-long series of posts,
I described how critical to the happiness and longevity of a relationship
appreciation for each other's priorities and perspectives is. The easiest
way I know to develop that appreciation is through listening to what the
other is communicating, how it is being transmitted, and why the messages
are being sent. Decoding a partner's style by asking these questions can
go a long way to helping each other treasure both similarities and differences
that define how much of the other is permitted into the relationship.
The more complete people can be to each other, the more love can flow freely
between them.

What do we listen to? Click here for the answer and full report


Gleb Tsipursky Ph.D. Gleb Tsipursky Ph.D.
Intentional Insights
12 Tips For Happy, Long-Lasting Relationships
Research-based strategies for healthy romance.
Posted Jan 18, 2017

Have you ever made silly mistakes that ruined great relationships?
I can't be the only one, can I? Well, since then, I've read a lot
more about the science on how to have happy and long-lasting
relationships, whether with romantic partners or family and friends.
My wife and I have been together for 18 years, over half my life,
and I have a wonderful circle of close friends. I want to share
these science-based tips with you to help you avoid those silly
mistakes and help your relationships flourish!

1. Be intentional.

Be intentional and figure out the truth about your relationship.
Think through all aspects of your relationship-your feelings and thoughts,
the other person's feelings and thoughts, and the external context.
If you notice yourself flinching away from a certain aspect of reality,
this is the time to double down your focus and really get at the truth.
The things you flinch away from, the truths you don't want to acknowledge
to yourself, are likely to be the ones that will most undermine your
relationship in the future. It's better to face the truth squarely in
the face right now and address it rather than let it sabotage your
relationship in the long run.

2. Avoid failing at their mind.

One of the biggest dangers in close relationships is assuming the other person
is exactly the same as you in their feelings and thoughts, and thus failing at
their mind. This is something that's so easy to flinch away from, as our emotional
self just doesn't want to accept that the person we're so close to is actually
different from us-sometimes very different. I know I made this mistake, and it
cost me dearly in the past. So how to avoid it?

3. Use Tell Culture.

Use Tell Culture! Tell Culture is a communication strategy where you are open
and honest with close people in your life about your feelings and thoughts,
about what's going on with you, lowering your private barrier and being vulnerable
and authentic. Tell them information about yourself that you think they would
want to know. For example, if you want a hug, you should tell the other person
that you would enjoy a hug. However, for Tell Culture to work, it's really
important for you not to expect that the other person will hug you.
You are responsible for telling them about your needs and desires, and
they are then free to act as they choose based on their own needs and desires.

Click for all the
relationship tips




Teens & Gaming

In Teens, Strong Friendships May Mitigate Depression
Associated With Excessive Video Gaming, Johns Hopkins
Bloomberg School of Public Health, Date: January 12, 2017

Summary:
Teenagers who play video games for more than four hours
a day suffer from symptoms of depression, but frequent
use of social media and instant messaging may mitigate
symptoms of game addiction in these teens, new research suggests.

The findings, scheduled for publication in the March 2017
issue of the journal Computers in Human Behavior, suggest
that while heavy gaming, particularly in boys, can be viewed
as a warning signal for parents, not everyone who plays many
hours a day is at risk for developing problems related to gaming.
Some of the downsides of gaming, the researchers say, may be
balanced out in those who are socially engaged either online
or in real life with friends. In fact, the researchers say,
boys with high-quality friendships appear immune from the depression
associated with heavy use of video games.

for full report click here


Online dating booming but how much does education matter
Online daters are most likely to contact people with the same
level of education as them, but are less fussy about an
intellectual match as they get older, according to QUT research.

Date:
January 12, 2017
Source:
Queensland University of Technology

Summary:
Online daters are most likely to contact people with the same
level of education as them, but are less fussy about an
intellectual match as they get older, according to new research.

This finding was revealed in a study titled: 'Things change
with age: Educational Assortment in online dating', conducted
by QUT behavioural economists Stephen Whyte and Professor
Benno Torgler.

The comprehensive study analysed the online dating interactions
of more than 41,000 Australians aged between 18-80, with the
findings now published by leading international journal Personality
and Individual Differences.

Their research is the largest ever behavioural economic analysis
of Australian online dating behaviour, with this body of work
reviewing 219,013 participant contacts by 41,936 members of
online dating website RSVP during a four-month period in 2016.

"Selecting a mate can be one of the largest psychological and
economic decisions a person can make and has long been the
subject of social science research across a range of disciplines,
all of which acknowledge one phenomenon: positive assortative
mating behaviour (homogamy)," Mr Whyte said.

Traditionally humans look for certain characteristics and traits
in a partner, including symmetry in areas such as: age, aesthetics,
attractiveness, personality, culture, education, religion and race;
however the internet has dramatically altered this process.

For the full report click here


Out in the cold: Why are the oldest people the most excluded?

Date:
January 4, 2017
Source:
University of Lincoln
Summary:

People over the age of 85 are significantly more likely to suffer
social exclusion than those in the 65 to 84-year-old bracket,
according to new research. In a study of 10,000 people aged over 65,
social policy researchers found the 'oldest old' -- those 85 and over
-- have more trouble accessing services such as healthcare and food shops,
with 16 percent reporting 'significant' problems, compared with only four
percent of their younger counterparts.

For the full report click here


THE GOTTMAN RELATIONSHIP BLOG
STAYING CONNECTED WITH YOUR TEEN IN
AN AGE OF DISTRACTION

Julia and Tim are sitting in my office, discussing their 14 year
old son. Jared, a once spunky and engaging middle schooler, has
morphed into a sullen and argumentative teen. "It's like it
happened overnight," Julia explains.

Once a kid who loved to hang out with the family, Jared spends
hours alone in his room. His phone is never far from sight.
"Even when he's in the room with us, he's not really there," adds Tim.

Like many parents, Julia and Tim feel they are at the mercy of
their teenager's moods and struggle to maintain a positive
connection with their son who seems hell bent on shutting them out.
It turns out that their experience is common. In a 1996 study of
220 tweens and teens between 5th and 12th grade, the proportion
of waking hours that those kids spent with their families dropped
from 35% to 14%.

For the rest of the story click here







Eating Disorder Research & News

Dr. Laura Hill specializes in the education and
research of eating disorders. She gives a wonderful
presentation about the subject in this video.
Calm, pleasure and satisfaction is what most people
experience after eating. But for people with eating
disorders, food brings anxiety, disturbance and noise.
Dr. Hill takes a look from the inside out from the "sound"
to the biology of these diseases and how the future holds a
different approach to manage the illness while bringing
these patients hope.

Click here for Dr. Laura Hill



RESEARCH ARTICLE OPEN ACCESS

Use of yoga in outpatient eating disorder treatment:
a pilot study.

Allison Hall, Nana Ama Ofei-Tenkorang, Jason T. Machan
and Catherine M. GordonEmail author
Journal of Eating Disorders2016

Conclusions

Yoga practice combined with outpatient eating disorder
treatment were shown to decrease anxiety, depression,
and body image disturbance without negatively impacting
weight. These preliminary results suggest yoga to be a
promising adjunct treatment strategy, along with standard
multidisciplinary care. However, whether yoga should be
endorsed as a standard component of outpatient eating
disorder treatment merits further study.

Click here for the full report



Research Reveals Help for Eating Disorder Patients

Jan. 6, 2017 Date:
January 6, 2017
Source:
Cornell College
Summary:
More people are dying from eating disorders than any
other psychiatric disorder, and professor has discovered
a way to help women by significantly reducing eating
disorder symptoms in those who are struggling.

"Our intervention encourages women to criticize media
messages which teach women and girls that we must be
thin to be considered beautiful," said Green. "We also
teach women and girls how to combat societal messages
which teach us to define our worth in terms of our appearances."

Click here for the full report



Identifying children at risk of eating disorders is key to saving lives

Date:
January 5, 2017
Source:
Newcastle University
Summary:
Spotting eating disorder symptoms in children as young
as nine years old will allow medics to intervene early
and save lives, experts say.

Click here for the full report



Brains of those with anorexia, bulimia can override urge to eat

Date:
November 8, 2016
Source:
University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
Summary:
Scientists have discovered the neurological reasons why
those with anorexia and bulimia nervosa are able to
override the urge to eat.

In a study published in the journal Translational Psychiatry,
the researchers showed that normal patterns of appetite
stimulation in the brain are effectively reversed in those
with eating disorders.

Rather than the hypothalamus, a brain region that regulates
appetite, driving motivation to eat, signals from other parts
of the brain can override the hypothalamus in eating disorders.

Read the full report



New insights on eating disorders

Scientists are uncovering the faulty neurobiology behind anorexia
and bulimia, debunking the myth that such eating disorders are
solely driven by culture and environment.

By Kirsten Weir
April 2016, Vol 47, No. 4


Public misunderstanding of mental health disorders is nothing
new. But for eating disorders in particular, misinformation abounds.
"You still read more about anorexia in the celebrity section of
publications than in health sections," says Nancy Zucker, PhD,
a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Duke University.
"The emphasis is on it being a culturally guided phenomenon."
Even medical definitions of eating disorders have often focused
on external factors, including cultural pressures, parents' attitudes
toward weight and diet, and stressful or traumatic events that might
trigger disordered eating habits. While the environment certainly
plays a part in shaping the behaviors, evidence is mounting that
eating disorders begin in the brain.

Read the full report click here



Hormones that are released during hunger affect decision making

Date:
May 9, 2016
Source:
University of Gothenburg
Summary:
Never make a decision when you are hungry. The hormone ghrelin
- that is released before meals and known to increase appetite
- has a negative effect on both decision making and impulse control,
report scientists.

Click for full report


Genetic risk factor for binge eating discovered

Date:
October 26, 2016
Source:
Boston University Medical Center
Summary:
Researchers have identified a gene (CYFIP2) associated with binge eating.
This finding represents one of the first examples of a genome-wide
significant genetic factor to be identified for binge eating in model
organisms or humans. These findings could potentially lead to treatments
targeted to normalize eating behaviors.

This finding represents one of the first examples of a genome-wide
significant genetic factor to be identified for binge eating in
model organisms or humans. In addition, the researchers discovered
a network of downregulated genes involved in myelination
(the process of forming a sheath around a nerve fiber to allow
nerve impulses to move quickly) that also was associated with
binge eating.

Click for the full report



Perceived obesity causes lower body satisfaction
for women than men, study shows

Date:
October 11, 2016
Source:
University of York
Summary:
'Owning' an obese body produces significantly lower body
satisfaction for females than males, scientists have found.
In the first study of its kind investigating healthy individuals
and their brain activity when perceiving themselves as either
slim or obese, psychologists found that the way we perceive
our bodies directly triggers neural responses which can lead
to body dissatisfaction.

These findings, which appear online in the journal Biological
Psychiatry, could potentially lead to treatments targeted to
normalize eating behaviors.

Click for the full report







Eating disorder prevention program
reduces brain reward region response to
supermodels

Change your attitude. Change your behavior. Change your brain.

Discussing the costs of pursuing the unrealistic thin beauty
ideal reduces valuation of this idea.

Scientists at Oregon Research Institute (ORI) have published
unique research results indicating that a brief dissonance-based
eating disorder prevention program (Body Project) alters how young
women's brains respond to images of thin supermodels. Previous
results from Body Project studies showed that the intervention
reduces pursuit of the unrealistic thin ideal espoused in the mass media.
The current study provides the first evidence that it fundamentally
alters how young women's brains response to supermodels, which play
a vital role in perpetuating this unattainable beauty idea.
Whole brain imaging before and after the intervention revealed
significant changes in brain responsivity when participants viewed
images of supermodels. This is the first study to use objective
brain imaging to detect the neural effects of a behavioral prevention
program.


Read the full report from Medical News Today.com


Stored fat fights against the body's attempts to lose weight

Obesity / Weight Loss / Fitness
Eating Disorders
Diabetes
Heart Disease

MNT Knowledge Center
Adapted Media Release
Published: Tuesday 24 November 2015
email35SHARE

The fatter we are, the more our body appears to produce a protein that
inhibits our ability to burn fat, suggests new research published in the
journal Nature Communication. The findings may have implications for the
treatment of obesity and other metabolic diseases.

Most of the fat cells in the body act to store excess energy and release
it when needed but some types of fat cells, known as brown adipocytes,
function primarily for a process known as thermogenesis, which generates
heat to keep us warm. However, an international team of researchers from
the Wellcome Trust-Medical Research Council Institute of Metabolic Sciences
at the University of Cambridge, UK, and Toho University, Japan, have shown
that a protein found in the body, known as sLR11, acts to suppress this process.

Researchers investigated why mice that lacked the gene for the production of
this protein were far more resistant to weight gain. All mice - and, in fact,
humans - increase their metabolic rate slightly when switched from a lower
calorie diet to a higher calorie diet, but mice lacking the gene responded
with a much greater increase, meaning that they were able to burn calories faster.

Further examinations revealed that in these mice, genes normally associated with
brown adipose tissue were more active in white adipose tissue (which normally
stores fat for energy release). In line with this observation, the mice themselves
were indeed more thermogenic and had increased energy expenditure, particularly
following high fat diet feeding.

read the full report click here

from: Medical news today


Study finds surprising links between bullying and eating disorders

Eating Disorders
Pediatrics / Children's Health
Depression
Anxiety / Stress


Being bullied in childhood has been associated with increased
risk for anxiety, depression and even eating disorders. But
according to new research, it's not only the victims who could
be at risk psychologically, but also the bullies themselves.

Researchers at Duke Medicine and the University of North Carolina
School of Medicine were surprised to find that in a study of 1,420
children, those who bullied others were twice as likely to display
symptoms of bulimia, such as bingeing and purging, when compared to
children who are not involved in bullying. The findings are published
in the December issue of International Journal of Eating Disorders.

"For a long time, there's been this story about bullies that they're
a little more hale and hearty," said lead author William Copeland, Ph.D.,
associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke
University School of Medicine. "Maybe they're good at manipulating social
situations or getting out of trouble, but in this one area it seems
that's not the case at all. Maybe teasing others may sensitize them
to their own body image issues, or afterward, they have regret for
their actions that results in these symptoms like binge eating followed
by purging or excess exercise."

read the full report from Medical News Today click here

The findings come from an analysis of interviews from the Great
Smoky Mountains Study, a database with more than two decades of
health information on participants who enrolled at age 9. The
data is considered a community sample and not representative of
the U.S. population, but offers clues to how children ages 9 to 16
could be affected.

Study finds surprising links
between bullying and eating disorders click here for the full report



Have an apple-shaped body? You may be more
susceptible to binge eating

Eating Disorders
Women's Health / Gynecology
Nutrition / Diet
Psychology / Psychiatry
Have an apple-shaped body? You may be more susceptible to binge eating

Have an apple-shaped body? You may be more susceptible to binge eating
read the full article click here



MNT Knowledge Center
Adapted Media Release
Published: Mon 16 November 2015 at 12am PST
email14

Women with apple-shaped bodies - those who store more of
their fat in their trunk and abdominal regions - may be at
particular risk for the development of eating episodes during
which they experience a sense of "loss of control," according
to a new study from Drexel University. The study also found
that women with greater fat stores in their midsections reported
being less satisfied with their bodies, which may contribute to
loss-of-control eating.

This study marks the first investigation of the connections between
fat distribution, body image disturbance and the development of
disordered eating.
"Eating disorders that are detected early are much more likely to be
successfully treated. Although existing eating disorder risk models
comprehensively address psychological factors, we know of very few
biologically-based factors that help us predict who may be more likely
to develop eating disorder behaviors," said lead author Laura Berner,
PhD, who completed the research while pursuing a doctoral degree at Drexel.

"Our preliminary findings reveal that centralized fat distribution may be
an important risk factor for the development of eating disturbance,
specifically for loss-of-control eating," said Berner. "This suggests
that targeting individuals who store more of their fat in the midsection
and adapting psychological interventions to focus specifically on body
fat distribution could be beneficial for preventing eating disorders."

The study, titled "Examination of Central Body Fat Deposition as a Risk
Factor for Loss-of-Control Eating," was published in the American Journal
of Clinical Nutrition.

Berner is now a postdoctoral research fellow at the Eating Disorders
Center for Treatment and Research at UC San Diego Health. Michael R.
Lowe, PhD, a professor in Drexel's College of Arts and Sciences, was
a co-author, along with Danielle Arigo, PhD, who was a postdoctoral
research fellow at Drexel and is now an assistant professor of psychology
at the University of Scranton; Laurel Mayer, MD, associate professor of
clinical psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and
Surgeons and the New York State Psychiatric Institute,; and David B. Sarwer,
PhD, professor of psychology in Psychiatry and Surgery at the Perelman
School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania as well as director
of clinical services at the Center for Weight and Eating Disorders.

Mounting evidence suggests that experiencing a sense of loss-of-control during eating
- feeling driven or compelled to keep eating or that stopping once one has started
is difficult - is the most significant element of binge-eating episodes regardless
of how much food is consumed, according to the researchers.

Have an apple-shaped body? You may be more susceptible to binge eating
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Dartmouth scientists unravel brain circuits involved in cravings

Alcohol / Addiction / Illegal Drugs
Eating Disorders
Psychology / Psychiatry
Dartmouth scientists unravel brain circuits involved in cravings

MNT Knowledge Center
Adapted Media Release
Published: Thu 12 November 2015 at 3am PST
Dartmouth scientists unravel brain circuits involved in cravings
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Dartmouth researchers studying rats have discovered that activation
of designer neural receptors can suppress cravings in a brain region
involved in triggering those cravings.

The study is the first to systematically show how designer brain
receptors and designer drugs work together to change how cues for
food stimulate motivation. The findings, which may help scientists
to fight addiction, overeating and other habitual behavior in humans,
appear in the European Journal of Neuroscience.

In everyday life, we are bombarded with advertisements, or cues,
that garner our attention and trigger us into purchasing products,
or rewards. Consequently, these reward-paired cues can become attractive
themselves. For example McDonald's golden arches can produce cravings
for fast food even though you haven't seen the food or aren't even hungry.
Scientists study this phenomenon using sign-tracking, or autoshaping, an
experimental conditioning in which the reward is given regardless of the
subject's behavior.

"Although we have a sense of what brain circuits mediate reward, less
is known about the neural circuitry underlying the transfer of value
to cues associated with rewards," says lead author Stephen Chang, a
postdoctoral fellow. "We were primarily interested in whether the ventral
pallidum, a brain region implicated in processing reward, is also
involved in sign-tracking."

Previously, it was impossible to inactivate brain areas like this repeatedly
and temporarily to study how cues become valuable in themselves. But it
is now possible with a new technology called DREADDs (designer receptors
exclusively activated by designer drugs). Your brain cells are loaded with
natural receptors, or molecules like jigsaw puzzles that are activated when
another molecule arrives that fits like a missing piece. But DREADDs are
engineered receptors introduced into neurons using viruses. Injection of a
synthetic drug can activate these receptors, thus shutting down the neurons
as a sort of remote control.

Dartmouth scientists unravel brain circuits involved in cravings
click here for the full report