The role of impulsivity in the development of substance use and eating disorders

Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2004 May;28(3):343-51. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2004.03.007.


Impulsivity is now widely viewed as a multidimensional construct consisting of a number of related dimensions. Although many measures of impulsivity are correlated, most recent factor analyses support at least a two-factor model. In the current paper, these two factors have been labelled reward sensitivity, reflecting one of the primary dimensions of Gray's personality theory, and rash-spontaneous impulsiveness. The evidence supporting the existence of two dimensions of impulsivity is reviewed in relation to substance misuse and binge eating.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bulimia / etiology
  • Bulimia / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Impulsive Behavior / complications
  • Impulsive Behavior / psychology*
  • Reinforcement, Psychology*
  • Substance-Related Disorders / etiology
  • Substance-Related Disorders / psychology*