Examining the correlates and antecedents of subjective binge eating episodes in female undergraduates
thesisposted on 23.05.2021, 09:55 by Molly E. Atwood
Binge eating is a core diagnostic feature of several eating disorders; however, controversy exists regarding the extent to which the size of an eating episode is important in the definition of a binge. The present study examined the relationship between subjective binge eating episodes (SBEs: experiencing loss of control while eating relatively small amounts of food) and eating disorder pathology, general pathology, and eating disorder-specific and general cognitive distortions in female undergraduate students (N=116) via self-report measures. In addition, negative affect and stress were examined as proximal antecedents of SBEs using naturalistic prospective monitoring. Findings indicated SBEs are associated with broad markers of eating disorder pathology and aspects of general pathology, and that eating disorder-specific cognitive distortions mediate the relationship between dietary restraint and SBE frequency. In addition, higher levels of negative affect were found to precede SBEs; however, stress was not identified as a statistically significant proximal antecedent. Findings are interpreted in light of methodological limitations, and clinical implications are discussed.