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Gutstadt, J.P. (1960). Psychosomatic Medicine. XXI, 1959: Obesity and Denial of Hunger. Albert Stunkard. Pp. 281-290.. Psychoanal Q., 29:292.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Psychosomatic Medicine. XXI, 1959: Obesity and Denial of Hunger. Albert Stunkard. Pp. 281-290.

(1960). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 29:292

Psychosomatic Medicine. XXI, 1959: Obesity and Denial of Hunger. Albert Stunkard. Pp. 281-290.

Joseph P. Gutstadt

Stunkard investigates the relationship between gastric motility and the experience of hunger and finds that whereas a group of nonobese women reported hunger during contractions of the empty stomach and no hunger in the absence of such contractions, a group of obese women failed to report hunger during stomach contractions. This denial extended to all sensations caused by gastric emptiness. Denial of hunger occurred in a significantly greater number of obese individuals manifesting the 'night eating syndrome'. It is suggested that this denial of hunger occurs most frequently in persons with conflict over eating or undergoing strong social pressures about eating too much ('calorie counters').

In commenting on Stunkard's paper, Walter W. Hamburger distinguishes between the nutritional demand of 'hunger' and the emotional demand of 'appetite'. He believes that obese individuals are responding to their emotionally conditioned 'appetites' rather than to their physiologically conditioned 'hunger'. In healthy persons there is an adequate integration of hunger and appetite whereas in the obese women studied there is dissociation between these two factors.

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Article Citation

Gutstadt, J.P. (1960). Psychosomatic Medicine. XXI, 1959. Psychoanal. Q., 29:292

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