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Eat Behav. 2018 Apr;29:59-63. doi: 10.1016/j.eatbeh.2018.02.006. Epub 2018 Feb 28.

BMI and disordered eating in urban, African American, adolescent girls: The mediating role of body dissatisfaction.

Author information

1
University of Maryland School of Medicine, Department of Neurology, 110 S Paca St, Baltimore, MD 21201, United States.
2
University of Maryland Baltimore School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, 737 West Lombard Street, Baltimore, MD 21201, United States.
3
University of North Florida, Department of Psychology, 1 UNF Drive, Jacksonville, FL 32224, United States.
4
University of Maryland Baltimore School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, 737 West Lombard Street, Baltimore, MD 21201, United States; RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, United States. Electronic address: mblack@umaryland.edu.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study examined the mediating role of body dissatisfaction between Body Mass Index (BMI) and subsequent disordered eating (e.g. dieting and restricting/purging) among early adolescent African American girls.

STUDY DESIGN:

Participants included 701 African American girls in 6th and 7th grades in urban schools serving low-income communities, mean age 12.15 (SD = 0.72) years. Participants were assessed at baseline and approximately 6 months later. Objectively measured height and weight were used to calculate BMI z-score. Participants completed questionnaires on body size dissatisfaction and recent dieting and restricting/purging behaviors.

RESULTS:

At baseline, 51.5% of participants were overweight/obese, and 60.4% expressed body dissatisfaction and a desire to be smaller. Path analytic analyses revealed change in body dissatisfaction significantly mediates the relation between initial BMI z-score and increases in dieting behaviors (B = 0.924, SE = 0.280, p = 0.001) but not restricting/purging behaviors (p = 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

Body dissatisfaction explains some associations between excess body weight and subsequent disordered eating symptoms among early adolescent, African American girls. Body dissatisfaction, identified by screening, may be an indicator of further negative consequences, including disordered eating behaviors.

KEYWORDS:

African American adolescents; Body dissatisfaction; Disordered eating; Early adolescent girls; Obesity; Overweight

PMID:
29522978
PMCID:
PMC5935573
[Available on 2019-04-01]
DOI:
10.1016/j.eatbeh.2018.02.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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