Eating Disorders Essay

747 words - 3 pages

Eating Disorders
Introduction to Behavioral Science
BEH/225

Eating Disorders
The theory of drive reduction was first proposed by Psychologist Clark Hull. His theory was based on the idea that learning only occurred if there was a physiological urge or tension that impelled the individual to behave in a manner which would satisfy the related physiological need. Unfortunately, his theory does not apply to diseases such as anorexia or bulimia.
The primary drive of hunger is controlled by our brain, specifically an area known as the hypothalamus; which regulates many aspects of motivation and emotion especially hunger, thirst and sexual behavior (Coon and Mitterer 2013). With our ...view middle of the document...

Cultural difference play a major role in eating disorders. In 1999 a study was published about the effects of exposing a culture to Western television for the first time. After Fiji was exposed to Western shows, there was a spike of eating disorders in teenage girls (Engel, Staats Reis and Dombeck 2007). Prior to this viewing the people of Fiji believed that the ideal body was plump, round and soft. However, this does not mean that one has a disease that is driven by vanity, but rather in an effort to become more attractive the individual has created a psychological syndrome that causes one to view food in a negative light. This can be explained through the idea of motivation, specifically: intrinsic and extrinsic motivations.
Intrinsic and extrinsic motivations are behavioral forces that drive individuals towards gaining or accomplishing a particular end. Intrinsic motivation is an internalized motivation such as a feeling of satisfaction from a job well-done; while extrinsic motivation is based upon an external stimulus such as a reward or a punishment. Being able to understand the differences between these motivating forces is important. Intrinsic motivation is contextual in nature and may change over time and extrinsic motivations are external motivators such as bonuses...

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