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Ciência & Saúde Coletiva

On-line version ISSN 1678-4561Print version ISSN 1413-8123


VALE, Antonio Maia Olsen do; KERR, Ligia Regina Sansigolo  and  BOSI, Maria Lúcia Magalhães. Risk behaviors for eating disorders among female adolescents from different social strata in the Brazilian Northeastern. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2011, vol.16, n.1, pp.121-132. ISSN 1678-4561.

This study sought to estimate the prevalence of eating disorders (ED) and identify risk factors among female adolescents in Fortaleza, Ceará, Brazil. It was conducted a sectional study with 652 high school students (14-20 years) using the Bulimic Investigatory Test of Edinburgh (BITE). A logistic regression model was applied. Approximately one quarter of participants showed risk eating pattern and control weight practices, among 1.2% signs of an installed ED were found. Fear of weight gain was reported by 62% of adolescents, independently if studying at public or private schools (p>0.05), but the use of risk practices was higher among private schools students (p<0.05). Not having a religion (OR: 2.2, 95%CI: 1.1-4.2) and studying in private school (OR: 1.7, 95%CI: 1.2-2.5) were associated with an increased risk of ED. The ED emerge as a public health problem even in the poor areas of Brazil and the desire for a thin body was not differentiated between different social strata, although the risk practices are significantly higher among respondents from private schools. Subjective and cultural aspects are presented not only as risk factors, but also as protectors.

Keywords : Eating disorders; Anorexia nervosa; Bulimia nervosa; Feeding behavior; Nutritional epidemiology; Body image.

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