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Am J Clin Nutr. 2000 Sep;72(3):837-43.

Influence of cognitive eating restraint on total-body measurements of bone mineral density and bone mineral content in premenopausal women aged 18-45 y: a cross-sectional study.

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US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service Western Human Nutrition Research Center, Davis, CA 95616, USA.



We examined the relation between cognitive eating restraint (CER) and total-body measurements of bone mineral density (BMD) and bone mineral content (BMC).


Our objective was to determine whether women with CER had lower total-body BMD and BMC than did other women.


Premenopausal women, 90-150% of ideal weight, had measurements of their BMD and BMC made and completed questionnaires on physical activity, weight history, body size satisfaction, dieting history, eating behavior, and childbearing history. Bone measurements were examined for differences between groups with low and high CER scores by using analysis of covariance and quartiles of body weight to adjust for body size differences. CER was assessed by using the Three-Factor Eating Inventory and was defined as a score > or =9; normal eating restraint (NER) was defined by a score <9. Total-body BMC, BMD, and fat and lean masses were measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry.


Fifty-two percent of the women were classified as having CER. Women with CER were significantly more dissatisfied with their bodies. Analysis of covariance, with weight as the covariate, indicated a significant difference in BMC between women in preplanned pairs from the 5 lowest and 5 highest CER levels. No significant differences in BMD were observed between groups. Significantly lower BMC was found in women with high CER scores and body weights <71 kg than in those with high CER scores and weights > or =71 kg.


BMC was significantly differently between women with low and high CER scores. BMC was significantly lower in women with body weights <71 kg and classified with CER. Lower BMC in women with high CER scores may indicate an increased risk of osteoporosis.

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