Teens who engage in unhealthy and excessive weight control behaviors — such as binge eating — continue doing so into young adulthood and beyond, according to a study conducted by University of Minnesota researchers.
“The findings from the current study argue for early and ongoing efforts aimed at the prevention, early identification, and treatment of disordered eating behaviors in young people,” commented lead investigator Dianne Neumark-Sztainer, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.D.
Researchers examined the records for 1,030 young men and 1,257 young women using data from Project EAT-III (Eating and Activity in Teens and Young Adults), a 10-year longitudinal study developed to examine eating, activity, and weight-related factors among young people. Subjects were largely between 13 and 16 years old at the beginning of the study, and 23 to 26 years old when it ended.
Participants answered questions about dieting, extreme weight control methods such as fasting, using food replacements and skipping meals, and out-of-control binge eating. Data concerning socioeconomic, gender, age, and race/ethnicity factors was also included.
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