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Health Education Prevention for Eating Disorders Among College Female Athletes

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Objective: To decrease risk factors for eating disorders among female college athletes. Method: Athletes (n=70) in 7 major university sports were randomly assigned to either an 8-week health education intervention or a comparison group. Results: Intervention subjects scored lower on drive for thinness (p<.01) and body dissatisfaction (p<.05); comparison group was lower on self-esteem (p<.001) and nutrition knowledge (p<.05). Regression analyses revealed that the educational intervention was associated with decreased drive for thinness (p<.05) and decreased drive for thinness was associated with decreased body dissatisfaction (p<.01). Conclusion: The intervention is unique and shows promise for helping female collegiate athletes at high risk for eating disorders.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Nutrition, Food, and Exercise Sciences, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL. 2: Division of Health Promotion, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.

Publication date: May 1, 2000

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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