This study aimed to determine the prevalence of eating disorders and body image among university students undertaking nutrition education. Subjects included 577 students from Gazi University, Faculty of Vocational Education, Department of Food and Nutrition Education (Group 1 n = 299) and other departments (Group 2 n = 278) which did not involve nutrition education. The Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-40), body cathexis index and anthropometric measurements were used to assess eating attitudes. The results showed that 75.9% of nutrition educated students and 83.5% of others had normal BMI (18.5-24.9 kg/m2). Thirty-four of the 577 students had an EAT-40 score over the cut-off level of 30. Thus, 14% of the nutrition educated were at high risk and 9.7% at moderate risk. Among others, 7.2% were at high risk and 13.3% at moderate risk. It was also seen that 30.1% of the nutrition educated and 29.5% of others were dissatisfied with their bodies. The mean EAT-40 score of all participants was 15.1±10.68; body cathexis score was 147.9±21.48. The difference between the two index means was not significant (p>0.05). A weak negative relationship was found between BMI, EAT-40 and the body image perception score. The results indicated that the prevalence of abnormal eating attitudes and behaviors was 5.9% among students. Nutrition education was found to have no effect on the occurrence of abnormal eating attitudes and behaviors.
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Yasemin Akdevelioglu and Huseyin Gumus, 2010. Eating Disorders and Body Image Perception among University Students. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 9: 1187-1191.
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