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Motivation for weight loss affects recall from autobiographical memory in dieters

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Two studies examined the connection between motivation for weight loss and autobiographical memory by comparing characteristics of autobiographical memories between dieters and non-dieters. Study 1 involved 29 normal/overweight dieters and 48 non-dieters, and Study 2 involved 18 obese dieters and 18 normal weight non-dieters. Memories recalled in response to dieting-related cue words were rated as more central to the person's identity and life story and contained more body- or weight-related elements for the dieters than the non-dieters. No differences between dieters and non-dieters were found on memories recalled in response to neutral cue words. The findings are discussed in relation to the notions of the working self (Conway & Pleydell-Pearce, 2000) and current concerns (Klinger, 1978).
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Keywords: Autobiographical memory; Current concerns; Motivation

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Aarhus University, Denmark

Publication date: October 1, 2008

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