Minding One's Reach (To Eat): The Promise of Computer Mouse-Tracking to Study Self-Regulation of Eating

Richard B. Lopez, Paul E. Stillman, Todd F. Heatherton, Jonathan B. Freeman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

In this review, we present the case for using computer mouse-tracking techniques to examine psychological processes that support (and hinder) self-regulation of eating. We first argue that computer mouse-tracking is suitable for studying the simultaneous engagement of—and dynamic interactions between—multiple perceptual and cognitive processes as they unfold and interact over a fine temporal scale (i.e., hundreds of milliseconds). Next, we review recent work that implemented mouse-tracking techniques by measuring mouse movements as participants chose between various food items (of varying nutritional content). Lastly, we propose next steps for future investigations to link behavioral features from mouse-tracking paradigms, corresponding neural correlates, and downstream eating behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number43
JournalFrontiers in Nutrition
Volume5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 22 2018

Keywords

  • Self-regulation
  • decision-making
  • eating behavior
  • individual differences
  • mouse-tracking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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