Disordered Eating Attitudes and Behaviors: Gender Differences in Adolescence and Young AdulthoodMassaldjieva R Ivanova*, Desislava Bakova, Maria Semerdjieva, Bianka Torniova, Boris Tilov and Ekaterina Raikova
Department of Health Care Management, Medical University of Plovdiv, Bulgaria
- Corresponding Author:
- Massaldjieva RI
Associate Professor in Psychology
Department of Health Care Management
Medical University of Plovdiv, Bulgaria
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: April 25, 2017; Accepted Date: May 08, 2017; Published Date: May 25, 2017
Citation: Massaldjieva RI, Bakova D, Semerdjieva M, Torniova B, Tilov B, et al. (2017) Disordered Eating Attitudes and Behaviors: Gender Differences in Adolescence and Young Adulthood. J Women's Health Care 6:368. doi:10.4172/2167-0420.1000368
Copyright: © 2017 Massaldjieva RI, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Introduction: Dieting, obsessive weight control practices, fears of fatness, negative body image, food and weight preoccupation and other distorted attitudes and behaviors are proven risk factors with a serious potential to facilitate the development of anorexia and bulimia nervosa and the so called “atypical ED”. They are not enough studied in Bulgaria. The purpose of this study was to assess the prevalence and the gender differences in disordered eating attitudes and behaviors in adolescents and young adults from Bulgaria.
Methods: We studied two age groups 886 (80.7%) adolescents from 14 to 19 years and 212 (19.3%) young adults from 20 to 40 years, 402 male and 696 female. The respondents were Bulgarian high school students, undergraduate university students and volunteers from the general population with higher education. All participants anonymously completed the Eating attitudes and behaviors questionnaire (EABQ); Bulgarian version of the SCOFF, The Eating Disorder Diagnostic Scale (EDDS) and gave information about their age, gender, height and weight, the lowest body weight during the last three months; the frequency of measuring the body weight. We calculated three composite EDDS sub-scores.
Results: The boys and girls total and composite questionnaires scores differed significantly. There were no significant gender differences in young adults, except for EABQ total score. The mean ranks in the adolescent group showed that the female subjects reported more disordered eating behavior and risky attitudes compared with the males. In both age groups, the total SCOFF and EABQ scores and the composite scores of EDDS correlated significantly and proportionally (Spearman’s correlation, p<0.01). The mean results from EABQ showed more distorted eating attitudes and behaviors in the groups above the SCOFF “Yes” risk threshold, the EABQ scores of males and females from the groups at risk and from the non-risk groups differed significantly (p<0.05).
Conclusion: More than one fifth (22.5%) of the girls examined are at risk for ED development and have significantly lower BMI values than boys. The risk in adult women and in males from both age groups is smaller. EABQ showed good discriminative capacities.