Speaker Name(s): Janet Polivy, PhD, Psychology and Psychiatry University of Toronto Mississauga
Description: The well-documented preference for thin female physiques dominating Western culture over the last few decades has produced an ever-increasing emphasis on dieting to lose weight and fit the thin ideal. Unfortunately, our research over the last three decades has demonstrated repeatedly that chronic dieters are more inclined to losing control and over-eating than they are to successful under-eating. At the same time, food availability and attractiveness have both increased, and food cues are now ubiquitous in all aspects of the environment, leading to a “toxic environment” with respect to food and eating. Our society is now more conducive to overeating than to under-eating. It does not seem practical to try to prevent exposure to food cues, so we must focus instead on strategies to overcome the lures.