A NOTABLE PROPORTION OF HIGH SCHOOL FEMALE ATHLETES DISPLAY EATING DISORDERS
Nicholls, J. F., Rauh, M. J., Lawson, M., Pernick, Y., & Hoskinson, M. (2004). The prevalence of disordered eating among adolescent female athletes in four high school sports. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 36(5), Supplement abstract 259.
The Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire was administered to high school girls (N = 190) participating in four sports (track and field, swimming/diving, lacrosse, and softball).
Overall, 39.5% of Ss reported eating disorders. Swimming/diving showed the greatest prevalence of eating disorders with 48.7% of Ss reporting weight and shape concerns as the major reasons for the eating behaviors. The ranking of disorder behaviors were binging (12.6%), vomiting (6.8%), laxatives (5.3%), and diuretics (2.1%). There was no difference between sports with regard to the type of disorder reported.
Implication. Eating disorder behaviors occur among female high school athletes. Appropriate corrective and educational methods should be undertaken. A more accurate and sane educational program on eating myths and nutrition should be part of high school sports for girls.
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