Professor Helen Egan: Food and eating - the pain and the pleasure

Professor Helen Egan: Food and eating - the pain and the pleasure
Date and time
18 Apr 2023 (5:00pm - 6:30pm)

Curzon Building

4 Cardigan Street Birmingham B4 7BD United Kingdom

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Helen Egan, Professor in Health Psychology

Food and eating - The pain and the pleasure

The Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences is pleased to host series of inaugural lectures given by the faculty's newly appointed Professors. This professorial inaugural lecture will be given by Helen Egan, Professor in Health Psychology.

Eating occurs within a social context, celebrations and ceremonies in all walks of life include food and eating. It is difficult to think of an area of psychology that does not incorporate some aspect of the food that we eat and the way in which we eat it, from developmental, through social and cultural psychology, health psychology, clinical, biological, and forensic psychology.

Food is used as a means of control and power where deprivation of liberties includes elements of restricting and controlling food, it can also be an expression of love and caring, from infant caregiving through to caring for oneself. Eating behaviours can be highly impacted by physical and mental ill-health and my research focuses on eating behaviours of people with Cystic Fibrosis where difficulties in self-regulating eating behaviours and a lack of pleasure in eating are common.

In this lecture I will explore some of the influences on eating behaviours and the ways in which mindfulness and self-compassion can enhance self-regulation and pleasurable eating, particularly for people with Cystic Fibrosis. I will explore the role of self-compassion and self-kindness and what these can mean to people in the context of health behaviours and eating behaviours in particular.