The Association Between Disordered Eating Concurrent High-Risk Health Behaviors Among Adolescents Girls in the Unites States
By: Larkin Callaghan
Published: 05/16/2012
Uploaded: 11/09/2017
Uploaded by: Pocket Masters
Pockets: Historical Dissertations, 2012 (May) Teachers College Columbia University Ed.D. Dissertations, Gottesman Libraries Archive
Tags: adolescence, Eating disorders, Girls, health risk behavior, risky sexual behavior, substance use and abuse

Description/Abstract: Research suggests that behaviors such as substance use and abuse, risky sexual activity, and suicide ideation are common among adolescent girls diagnosed with eating disorders. These behaviors have also been associated with undiagnosed screen positive disordered eating adolescent girls, though these explorations have been predominantly limited to regional populations. These studies also neglected to determine if there are differences in the associations between distinct disordered eating behaviors. Further, additional risk behaviors, such as reckless driving, and violence and aggression have been historically underexplored. This study, therefore, utilizes a nationally representative
sample of adolescent girls in the United States, from the 2009 Youth Risk Behavior

The survey, to explore associations between disordered eating behaviors and a range of high-risk health behaviors, and to explore differences between distinct disordered eating behaviors. Risk behaviors of interest include risky sexual activity, substance use and abuse, victimization, violence and aggression, and suicide ideation. Non-parametric tests, logistic regressions, and generalized linear models were used in this analysis. Figures indicate 9.7% of girls are exclusively fasting, 1.7% are exclusively self-induce vomiting, 2.8% are exclusively using diet pills, and 1.6% are using all three disordered eating behaviors. Results demonstrate that compared to girls with no disordered eating, there are strong associations between disordered eating behavior and risky sexual activity (ORs: 1.7 – 6.5; p <.05), substance use and abuse (ORs: 1.6 – 12.5; p <.05), drunk driving
behaviors (ORs: 1.5 – 4.8; p <.05), victimization (ORs: 1.5 – 5.9; p <.05), violence and
aggression (ORs: 1.8 – 17.2; p <.05), and suicide ideation (ORs: 1.8 – 14.5; p <.05).
Results also show differences in these associations between specific disordered eating behaviors. Health education initiatives should directly address the prevention of disordered eating behavior.