Is body checking in the eating disorders more closely related to diagnosis or to symptom presentation?

V Mountford, AM Haase, G Waller

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

    33 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Body checking behaviours and cognitions are seen as underlying the core pathology of eating disorders—the overevaluation of eating, shape and weight. While it has been demonstrated that levels of behaviours and cognitions differentiate eating-disordered women from non-eating-disordered women, little is known with regard to how these findings relate to diagnostic group. This study aimed to determine whether body checking cognitions and behaviours are best understood with regard to diagnostic category or symptom presentation. Eighty-four eating-disordered women (with diagnoses of anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder or other Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified) completed measures of body checking behaviours and cognitions and eating psychopathology. Results showed that different aspects of body checking were more closely associated with diagnosis and with symptom presentation. Anorexia nervosa and binge-eating-disorder patients had particularly low levels of body checking behaviours and some related cognitions. However, the belief that body checking allows one to be accurate in knowing one’s weight was associated with bingeing and vomiting behaviours, rather than diagnosis. Future directions for research include understanding the links between body checking phenomena and neurological features. Clinical implications are discussed.
    Translated title of the contributionIs body checking in the eating disorders more closely related to diagnosis or to symptom presentation?
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2704 - 2711
    Number of pages7
    JournalBehaviour Research and Therapy
    Volume45
    Publication statusPublished - 2007

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