Body Checking in Anorexia Nervosa: from Inquiry to Habit

Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-18 (forthcoming)
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Body checking, characterized by the repeated visual or physical inspection of particular parts of one’s own body (e.g. thighs, waist, or upper arms) is one of the most prominent behaviors associated with eating disorders, particularly Anorexia Nervosa (AN). In this paper, we explore the explanatory potential of the Recalcitrant Fear Model of AN (RFM) in relation to body checking. We argue that RFM, when combined with certain plausible auxiliary hypotheses about the cognitive and epistemic roles of emotions, is able to explain key characteristics of body checking, including how body checking behavior becomes habitual and compulsive.

Author Profiles

Somogy Varga
Aarhus University


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