Nichole Kelly, a member of the Prevention Science Institute and Health Promotion and Obesity Prevention Initiative, conducts research on eating behaviors and weight gain. She seeks to understand the cognitive and emotional mechanisms that work against healthy eating decisions. Her research also considers the impacts of multicultural issues behind eating decisions and has a focus on developing novel interventions for people of all ages and within families and community groups. In her teaching, Kelly strives to challenge her students to understand the barriers and facilitators associated with changing health behaviors and reflect on individual, interpersonal, cultural and community factors that shaped their own experiences.
Areas of Expertise (5)
To examine the associations among self-reported loss-of-control (LOC) eating, emotion dysregulation, body mass, and objective energy intake among youth. Emotion dysregulation may be 1 individual factor that promotes excess energy intake and increases in body mass among youth with LOC eating.
Short sleep duration and daytime sleepiness have been associated with an increased risk for the onset of type 2 diabetes in adults. There has been far less attention to the characterization of sleep in adolescents at-risk for diabetes or to the possible behavioral mechanisms, such as disinhibited eating, through which sleep may affect metabolic functioning.
Data suggest that depressed affect and dietary restraint are related to disinhibited eating patterns in children and adults. Yet, experimental research has not determined to what extent depressed affect acutely affects eating in the absence of physiological hunger (EAH) in adolescents. In the current between-subjects experimental study, we measured EAH in 182 adolescent (13-17 y) girls (65%) and boys as ad libitum palatable snack food intake after youth ate to satiety from a buffet meal. Just prior to EAH, participants were randomly assigned to view either a sad or neutral film clip. Dietary restraint was measured with the Eating Disorder Examination. Adolescents who viewed the sad film clip reported small but significant increases in state depressed affect relative to adolescents who viewed the neutral film clip (p
Reports an error in "Racial Variations in Binge Eating, Body Image Concerns, and Compulsive Exercise Among Men" by Nichole R. Kelly, Elizabeth W. Cotter, Marian Tanofsky-Kraff and Suzanne E. Mazzeo (Psychology of Men & Masculinity, Advanced Online Publication, Aug 25, 2014, np). The name of author Elizabeth W. Cotter was misspelled as Elizabeth E. Cotter. All versions of this article have been corrected. (The following abstract of the original article appeared in record 2014-34834-001.) Binge eating in young men is associated with obesity and metabolic dysfunction, as well as disordered eating attitudes and behaviors. Although preliminary research suggests that Asian American males might be more likely to binge eat and report body image concerns compared with men of other races/ethnicities, few studies have investigated racial variations in this disordered eating behavior and its correlates. The goal of the current study was to examine binge eating, body image concerns, drive for muscularity, and compulsive exercise in a sample of Black, Asian American, and White men (N = 365). Results suggest that men who reported binge eating also reported higher body mass, male body image concerns, internalization of the male body ideal, and compulsive exercise than men who did not engage in binge eating. Asian American men endorsed higher body image concerns relative to White and Black men. Furthermore, compulsive exercise was particularly high among Asian American men with binge eating. Although additional research is needed to examine potential variations in binge eating, body image, and compulsive exercise in diverse racial and ethnic groups, results suggest that Asian American men might be at higher risk for disordered eating attitudes and behaviors consistent with a desire to achieve a muscular body type. Future research should examine cultural factors, such as acculturation, that might contribute to these potentially harmful cognitions and behaviors.
The current study examined whether distress tolerance and negative urgency moderate the link between depressive symptoms and binge eating frequency, and between disordered eating attitudes and binge eating frequency. Young adult women (N=186) completed questionnaires assessing depressive symptoms, cognitive restraint, eating, shape and weight concerns, distress tolerance, impulsivity (including negative urgency), and binge eating. After controlling for body mass index, race/ethnicity, and other domains of impulsivity, negative urgency was significantly associated with binge eating above and beyond the influence of disordered eating attitudes and depressive symptoms. Distress tolerance, in contrast, was not associated with binge eating. In addition, neither negative urgency nor distress tolerance moderated the associations between disordered eating attitudes and binge eating frequency, or between depressive symptoms and binge eating. Results support the additive role of difficulties responding adaptively to distress in binge eating frequency, above and beyond the influence of emotional distress. Findings highlight the potential value of focusing on negative urgency in targeted treatments for binge eating among women. Importantly, results from the current study differ from those of previous research; these discrepancies could be the result of variations in sample characteristics and approaches to the assessment of binge eating behavior. Additional research, including longitudinal studies and research using "real-time" assessment strategies, such as ecological momentary assessment, is necessary to elucidate further the role of various emotion regulation strategies in maintaining binge eating behavior in adult women.
To examine the link between binge eating, executive functioning, and behavioral impulsivity.
To clarify directions for research and practice, research literature evaluating nutrition and dietary interventions in college and university settings was reviewed.
The current study explored whether specific cognitive coping strategies moderated the relation between global eating disorder symptomatology and binge eating frequency. Global eating disorder symptomatology and cognitive coping strategies (i.e., self-blame, acceptance, rumination, positive refocusing, refocus on planning, positive reappraisal, putting into perspective, catastrophizing, and other-blame) were evaluated in a sample of women who reported engaging in binge eating in the absence of compensatory behaviors (N = 419). Moderation analyses indicated that most positive cognitive coping strategies were associated with reduced binge eating frequency; however, there was no such buffering effect among individuals who reported engaging in acceptance, or in negative coping strategies. These results suggest that focusing on specific positive cognitive coping skills might be an effective approach to decreasing binge eating frequency, although additional experimental research is needed.
Research has identified a relation between exposure to thin-ideal magazine and television media images and eating disorder pathology. However, few studies have examined the potential influence of Internet media on eating disorder behaviors and attitudes. This study investigated associations among image-focused media exposure, body dissatisfaction, eating pathology and thin-ideal internalization in a sample of 421 female undergraduates. Undergraduate women spent significantly more time viewing online appearance-oriented media, rather than reading image-focused magazines. Appearance-oriented Internet and television use were associated with eating pathology. Moreover, the association between image-focused Internet use and BD was mediated by thin-ideal internalization. These findings are consistent with those of previous research, and highlight the vulnerability individuals high in thin-ideal internalization might have to media exposure. They also suggest that Internet media use is an important topic to attend to in eating disorders prevention and treatment.
Most measures of eating disorder symptoms and risk factors were developed in predominantly White female samples. Yet eating disorders affect individuals of all racial and ethnic backgrounds. Black women appear more vulnerable to certain forms of eating pathology, such as binge eating, and less susceptible to other eating disorder symptoms and risk factors, such as body dissatisfaction, compared with their White peers. Despite concern that extant measures do not adequately assess eating concerns among Black women, the construct validity of scores on most of these measures has not been adequately examined within this population. This study included 2,208 Black and White women who completed the following: the Binge Eating Scale (BES), the Eating Disorder Diagnostic Scale (EDDS), the Eating Attitudes Test—26 (EAT–26), the Eating Disorder Inventory Body Dissatisfaction and Drive for Thinness subscales, the Bulimia Test—Revised (BULIT–R), the Multidimensional Body–Self Relations Questionnaire—Appearance Evaluation subscale (MBSRQ–AE), and the Objectified Body Consciousness Scale (OBCS). Most measures yielded internally consistent scores in both races. Confirmatory factor analyses indicated that loadings for some measures, including the EAT–26 and EDDS, were not invariant across groups and thus do not assess equivalent constructs in White and Black women. However, others, including the BULIT–R, BES, OBCS, and MBSRQ–AE, exhibited factorial invariance in both races. Results suggest scores are likely not equivalent across races for several popular measures of eating disorder symptoms and risk factors. Thus, it is recommended that researchers and clinicians obtain additional information regarding racial/cultural factors when using these instruments with Black women. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
Silhouette measures are one approach to assessing body dissatisfaction in children, although little is known about their use among racially diverse, overweight girls seeking weight-loss treatment. This study assessed racial differences in body dissatisfaction and body size perceptions of 58 girls (ages 6–11, 66% Black, 34% White) participating in a randomized trial for pediatric overweight. Body dissatisfaction did not differ between races; 99% of girls reported an ideal figure smaller than their current one. Black girls selected a larger silhouette to represent their ideal body size, and most girls in both racial groups underestimated their actual size. Outcomes strengthen the argument that, despite an overall preference for a larger body size, obesity might mitigate cultural factors that protect Black girls from body dissatisfaction. Additional research is needed to enhance understanding of children’s body size perceptions and dissatisfaction to inform assessment and treatment of pediatric obesity and associated disordered eating symptoms.