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Behav Med. 2016;42(2):93-104. doi: 10.1080/08964289.2014.955077. Epub 2014 Nov 25.

The Development of a Novel Measure to Assess Motives for Compensatory Eating in Response to Exercise: The CEMQ.

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a Boston University.
b The University of Texas at Austin.


Compensatory eating in response to exercise may be an obstacle to achieving weight-loss and fitness goals. In this study we develop and conduct a preliminary examination of the psychometric properties of the Compensatory Eating Motives Questionnaire (CEMQ), a self-report questionnaire of motives for compensatory eating. Development and testing of the CEMQ was conducted in two student samples. Of respondents, 75% reported engaging in compensatory eating. Factor analysis yielded factors representing three domains of motives for compensatory eating: Eating for Reward, Eating for Recovery, and Eating for Relief. Internal consistency of the factors was adequate, and the factor structure was replicated. Correlations between the CEMQ subscales and trait questionnaires supported hypotheses for convergent and divergent validity. These results encourage further investigation of compensatory eating as a potential obstacle to weight loss, and support the continued assessment of the CEMQ as a tool to measure three conceptually distinct motives for compensatory eating.


compensatory eating; eating; exercise; motivation; motives

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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