Increased Habit Frequency in the Daily Lives of Patients with Acute Anorexia Nervosa

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftForschungsartikelBeigetragenBegutachtung



Strict eating routines and frequent rigid behavior patterns are commonly observed in patients with anorexia nervosa (AN). A recent theory proposes that while these behaviors may have been reinforced initially, they later become habitual. To date, however, research has been overly focused on eating-disorder (ED)-related habits. Over the course of seven days, we applied an ecological momentary assessment (EMA) to investigate the habit frequency and strength of ED-specific (food intake) and ED-unspecific (hygiene) habits in the daily lives of a sample of n = 57 AN and n = 57 healthy controls (HC). The results of the hierarchical models revealed that habits were significantly more likely in patients compared with HC for both categories, independently. Furthermore, a lower body mass index (BMI) was associated with increased habit frequency in AN. Our study strengthens the habit theory of AN by showing the relevance of habits beyond ED-specific behavioral domains. This also supports the development of innovative therapeutic interventions targeting habitual behavior in EDs.


PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 21 Sept. 2022

Externe IDs

PubMedCentral PMC9573582
Scopus 85139773020
ORCID /0000-0002-2864-5578/work/142233482
ORCID /0000-0003-2132-4445/work/142236357
ORCID /0000-0002-3907-6630/work/142248958



  • Anorexia Nervosa/therapy, Ecological Momentary Assessment, Feeding Behavior, Feeding and Eating Disorders, Habits, Humans