Changing attention bias to reduce body dissatisfaction

Theme Mental health

Workstream Psychological interventions

Status: This project is ongoing

Eye-tracking studies have found that people living with an eating disorder are likely to pay more attention to lower weight bodies. This is also true for those who feel highly dissatisfied with their body, which itself is a risk factor for developing both eating disorders and depression.

Eye-tracking studies look at and measure eye movements, pupil dilation, point of gaze, and blinking. They do this to understand what study participants look at, engage with, and what they ignore.

Spending more time looking at lower weight bodies can increase a person’s dissatisfaction with their own body. Helping someone to retrain where they focus their attention could potentially be used to prevent and treat eating disorders.

Project aims

We want to develop an attention-training intervention and test its role in reducing body dissatisfaction.

What we hope to achieve

Once we have developed our intervention, we will apply for further funding to test how effective it is at reducing body dissatisfaction in people with eating disorders.