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Earlier predictors of eating disorder symptoms in 9-year old children. A longitudinal Study

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Kathryn Parkinson, Professor Ann Le Couteur, Professor Ashley AdamsonORCiD


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The aim of the study was to examine predictors of eating disorder symptoms in a population based sample at the earliest age at which they can be measured using the Children’s Eating Attitudes Test. Data were collected from the longitudinal Gateshead Millennium Study cohort; 609 children participated in the 7 year data sweep (and their mothers and teachers), and 589 children participated in the 9 year data sweep. Eating disorder symptoms at 9 years were higher in boys, and in children from more deprived families. Higher eating disorder symptoms were associated with more body dissatisfaction at 9 years. Higher symptoms were predicted by higher levels of dietary restraint and of emotional symptoms, but not greater body dissatisfaction, 2 years earlier. The study showed that some correlates of high eating disorder symptoms found in adolescents and adults are also found in children, before the rise in diagnosable eating disorders over the pubertal period.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Parkinson KN, Drewett RF, Le Couteur A, Adamson AJ, The GMS Core Team

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Appetite

Year: 2012

Volume: 59

Issue: 1

Pages: 161-167

Print publication date: 30/03/2012

ISSN (print): 0195-6663

ISSN (electronic): 1095-8304

Publisher: Elsevier BV


DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2012.03.022


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