Frontal lobe-related cognition in the context of self-disgust

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Vasileia Aristotelidou
Vivas A.B.
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Self- disgust is an adverse self-conscious emotion that plays an important role in psychopathology and well-being. However, self-disgust has received little attention in the emotion literature, therefore our understanding of the processes underlying the experience of selfdisgust is relatively scarce, although neuropsychological and neuroimaging studies support the idea that this emotion may heavily rely on frontal lobe-related cognition. To test this hypothesis, in two studies we investigated the relationship between state and trait levels of self-disgust, cognition and emotion regulation in healthy adults. Specifically, in Study 1 we tested the hypothesis that emotion regulation strategies (avoidance, suppression, and cognitive reappraisal) mediate the relationship between inhibition ability and state and trait levels of self-disgust. In Study 2, we followed a more comprehensive approach to test the hypothesis that frontal lobe-related cognitive processes (updating, Theory of Mind–ToM-, and self-attention) are closely related to the experience of self-disgust in healthy adults. Overall, across these studies, we found evidence to support the idea that inhibition ability and ToM may play a role in the experience of state and trait self-disgust, respectively. However, we did not find consistent evidence across the two studies to support the notion held in the literature that the experience of self- conscious emotions, in this case self-disgust, is heavily dependent on frontal lobe-related cognition.
Aristotelidou V, Overton PG, Vivas AB (2023) Frontal lobe-related cognition in the context of self-disgust. PLoS ONE 18(8): e0289948.