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Examining the role of negative urgency in a predictive model of bulimic symptoms

Highlights•Studied negative urgency as a moderator in the dual-pathway model of bulimic symptoms•Negative urgency is the tendency to act rashly when experiencing negative emotions.•Negative urgency predicted bulimic symptoms beyond established model predictors.•Negative urgency did not interact with depressive affect or dietary restraint.•The role of negative urgency is consistent with the treatment of mood intolerance.AbstractThe etiological dual pathway model of bulimia nervosa suggests that dietary restraint and negative affect are significant predictors of this disorder. Negative urgency, or the tendency to act rashly in response to negative emotionality, is also associated with bulimia nervosa; however, no study has examined the role of negative urgency within the context of the dual pathway model. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between bulimic symptomatology and negative urgency in the context of dietary restraint and depressive affect. Participants (N = 166) were college women recruited from a private mid-western university through an online participant registry. A self-report battery assessed depressive affect, dietary restraint, negative urgency, and bulimic symptoms. Participants' height and weight were measured in-person to determine body mass index. A significant main effect of negative urgency was found after controlling for depressive affect and dietary restraint. The interaction between depressive affect and negative urgency to predict bulimic symptoms approached significance; however, no statistically significant interaction between dietary restraint and negative urgency was observed. These results provide support for the inclusion of negative urgency as a significant factor in etiological frameworks of bulimia nervosa.

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