Erratum: A Systematic Review of the Application And Correlates of YFAS-Diagnosed ‘Food Addiction' in Humans: Are Eating-Related ‘Addictions' a Cause for Concern or Empty Concepts?

2017-07-25T14:01:23Z (GMT) by Long C.G. Blundell J.E. Finlayson G.
The proposition of so-called ‘food addiction' (FA) in the scientific literature has stimulated a recent surge in research and debate. The concept of FA is controversial, and opinion is divided. Many of the findings depend upon the use of a single instrument called the Yale Food Addiction Scale (YFAS). This review systematically examined FA, as defined by the YFAS, reported in 40 experimental human studies published in or after 2009. The results indicated that much of the literature makes the supposition that food addiction is an accepted neurobiological disease, consistent with substance use disorders; an interpretation based on very limited data. This raises the question as to whether those individuals who meet the YFAS criteria for diagnosis are truly ‘addicted' to food or if they experience significant impairment to their psychological wellbeing and quality of life as would be expected in clinically recognised addictive disorders. At the present time, little research has investigated the extent to which a psychometric self-assessment of FA symptomatology can elucidate a harmful relationship with target foods in the diet. A positive YFAS diagnosis is usually positively associated with BMI and strongly linked with the presence of binge eating, but certain exceptions within the literature were revealed. Further clarification is required as to whether so-called FA is sufficiently different to existing conditions and traits to warrant classification as a distinctive disease phenotype rather than an expression of strong habits and preferences.