A series of related single-case experiments were designed to clarify the separate therapeutic variables of the behavior modification treatment of anorexia nervosa. Positive and negative reinforcement, informational feedback, and the size of meals contributed to increased eating behavior.
Aspects of the data suggest that feedback of information as to weight and caloric intake may be the most important variable in that it sets the occasion for reinforcement. Without feedback, positive reinforcement appeared to be relatively ineffective.
Agras WS, Barlow DH, Chapin HN, Abel GG, Leitenberg H. Behavior Modification of Anorexia Nervosa. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1974;30(3):279–286. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1974.01760090003001