The Eating Disorders Research Group focuses on understanding causal and maintenance factors related to eating and weight disorders as well as developing and improving treatments for those affected.
As a research team, we aim to answer such questions as:
- What do people with anorexia nervosa value about their disorder, and do patients’ perceived benefits and burdens of anorexia predict how well they will fare in treatment?
- What risk factors for eating disorders exist specifically for elite athletes?
- What causes anorexia in those with autism and how is it best to treat those with this dual-diagnosis?
- What role does attachment to caregivers and the ability to understand behaviours in terms of mental states (e.g. intention) play in family therapy for adolescent anorexia?
- What can we learn about Avoidance Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) and its subtypes?
- What role does oxytocin play in social abilities and body awareness in anorexia?
- What’s the impact of fasting on mood, cognition, and disordered eating?
- How can intuitive eating be best used as treatment in community eating disorder services?
Details of current projects can be found below:
- Ambivalence in anorexia: The predictive validity of perceived advantages and disadvantages on treatment outcome
- Attachment and mentalization in family therapy for adolescent anorexia nervosa
- A systematic examination of the influence of oxytocin on social abilities and body awareness in anorexia nervosa
- The impact of an intermittent fasting diet on disordered eating symptomology and mood – does it differ for intermittent versus continuous calorie restriction?
- Risk factors of eating disorders in athletes
- Study of eating disorders in autistic females (SEDAF)
- Exploring best practice for diagnosis of ARFID and classification of sub-types
**See links below for audio and video of Dr Lucy Serpell's UCL Minds Lunch Hour Lecture: Should I fast for my health and wellbeing? from October 2019