Eating attitudes, body image and risk for eating disorders in a group of Spanish dancers

Ignacio Jáuregui Lobera, Patricia Bolaños-Ríos, Eva Valero-Blanco, Ángeles Ortega-de-la-Torre


Introduction: Prevalence of eating disorders (ED) and discrepancies between actual weight and weight perception seem much higher in dancers. The aims analysed in 77 dancers were: risk for ED; relationship between eating attitudes and psychological variables; dieting and self-weighing, and body image distortion.

Method: Weight- and body image-related variables, dieting, self-reported physical fitness, specific ED-related variables and other psychological variables were assessed. The robust Huber’s model was applied in order to test the inflluence of the variables analysed on the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-40) scores. In case of categorical variables, the Chi-square (χ2-test) or the Fisher’s exact test were applied.

Results: Higher risk of ED was not obtained. Despite the relationship between EAT-40 and BMI, body appreciation and drive for thinness, scores on EAT-40 and BMI do not suggest higher risk in dancers. Dancers had a similar weight perception than other populations and body dissatisfaction seems not to be worse than the reported in other types of participants.

Conclusions: Despite some limitations, our study adds some data in this field of study bearing in mind the use of a cluster of variables previously
not taken into account as a whole.

Palabras clave

Dancers. Eating disorders. Weight misperception. Self-weighing. Body dissatisfaction. Body image distortion. Body appreciation.

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