Perception of hunger to insulin-induced hypoglycemia in anorexia nervosa




We studied the effect of insulin-induced hypoglycemia on changes of hunger ratings in anorectic patients before and after cognitive-behavioral therapy.


The subjects were 17 females with restricting anorexia nervosa at low body weight (AN-R), 6 anorectic patients whose weight was restored after cognitive-behavioral therapy (AN-T), and 11 age-matched female controls. All subjects gave hunger ratings by linear visual analog technique before and after insulin or saline injection.


Hunger ratings increased significantly 45 min after insulin injection in control females. However, ratings paradoxically decreased after insulin injection in AN-R females. They increased slightly after insulin injection in AN-T females, but the difference was not statistically significant. One-factor analysis of variance for the peak values of hunger ratings was significant. These values in control females were significantly higher than those in AN-R and AN-T females.


These results suggest that perception of hunger to insulin-induced hypoglycemia in AN patients is disturbed. © 2001 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 29: 354–357, 2001.