My Greatest Accomplishment: The development of several new behavioral and technological treatments for bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder. Over 42 million Americans will experience clinically significant binge-eating during their lifetime and nearly 4 million will receive a diagnosis of bulimia nervosa or binge-eating disorder. Yet our ability to treat these disorders remains inadequate, with even our best treatment options producing remission in less than 50 percent of cases. My work focuses on the identification of factors that maintain eating pathology such as emotion dysregulation, impulsivity, or altered reward responsivity that are inadequately targeted in existing treatment approaches and the development of new behavioral treatment approaches that can better target these maintenance factors. I’ve also developed several technologies designed to augment behavioral treatments for eating disorders that combine the use of sensor technologies capable of continuous measurement of physiological indicators, computing technologies, and advanced statistical algorithms to detect and ultimately prevent momentary risk of eating-disorder symptoms.
How Drexel Helped: As a doctoral student, I was able to work closely with several faculty members at Drexel who were leaders in the field of eating disorders, obesity and treatment development and evaluation. My mentors always pushed me to think big, question long-standing conventions, and take intellectual risks, which I think is a critical for pushing our field forward. I consider myself lucky to still be working with many of these individuals now that I’ve returned to Drexel as a faculty member!
Where I’ll Be in Five Years: Working to disseminate the treatments I’ve developed into real-world clinical practice and continuing to identify new ways we can increase treatment efficacy.
“If I live to be 100, the change I’d most like to see in the world is…
better efficacy of and access to mental health care!”
— Adrienne Juarascio