Nutritional and neuropsychological profile of the executive functions on binge eating disorder in obese adults

Mariana Ermel Córdova, Cecilia Cesa Schiavon, Fernanda Michielin Busnello, Caroline Tozzi Reppold


Objective: To examine the relationships between obese patients with and without binge eating disorder (BED) and the neuropsychological profiles
of their executive functions.

Methods: Data from 36 obese individuals (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2) were divided into two groups, where one group was found to be positive for signs of BED according to the Binge Eating Scale. Two neuropsychological tests of executive function were carried out: the Go/No-go Task and the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT). Nutritional status was evaluated by measures of body weight, height and abdominal circumference, and from these, body mass indexes (BMI) were calculated.

Results: Both groups presented similar nutritional characteristics; there were no differences when it came to the health status of individuals with or without BED. Participants found positive for signs of BED had the lowest IGT scores (p = 0.004), and Go/No-go omission scores (p = 0.015) and commission scores (p = 0.04). Further statistically significant differences were also observed here between the two groups. Statistical differences in the IGT results correlated with BED, and were associated categorically (p = 0.005).

Conclusion: Obese individuals frequently present deficits in selective attention, inhibitory control, decision-making and planning that can be directly related to binge eating and which is linked to BED. Nutritional status did not differ between the two groups studied, and did not show any connection with the disorder.

Palabras clave

Binge Eating Disorder; Executive Function; Neuropsychology; Obesity; Nutritional Status.

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