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Binge-eating disorder in students: high prevalence and strong link to impulsive and compulsive traits

Binge-eating disorder in students: high prevalence and strong link to impulsive and compulsive traits
Binge-eating disorder in students: high prevalence and strong link to impulsive and compulsive traits
Objective: Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is the most common eating disorder, and is associated with significant comorbidity, with university students being particularly vulnerable. We aimed to assess associations of BED with a wide range of comorbidities and measures of impulsivity and compulsivity in university students, to gain better understanding of its prevalence, correlates and pathophysiology.

Method: We carried out an internet-based survey, assessing presence of BED using a validated structured self-report diagnostic tool, demographics, substance use, impulsive behaviours, psychiatric history and measures of impulsivity and compulsivity. Approximately 10,000 students were invited to take part. Group differences between students with current BED and students without BED were investigated.
Results: 3415 students completed the survey, with 83 (2.4%) screening positive for BED. BED was associated with female gender, hazardous/harmful alcohol use, depression and anxiety symptoms, low self-esteem, post-traumatic stress disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, treatment for psychological/emotional problems (including prescribed medication) and trait impulsivity and compulsivity. However, the largest effect sizes were evident for associations with trait impulsivity and compulsivity.

Conclusions: The associations of BED with trait impulsivity and compulsivity implicate these latent phenotypes in its pathophysiology. The identified links between BED and a wide range of mental disorders highlight the need to screen for disordered eating in student populations, including when students present with other mental health conditions.
1092-8529
61-69
Solly, Jeremy E.
b3341839-0b3c-4660-be99-af4f8178a99f
Chamberlain, Samuel
8a0e09e6-f51f-4039-9287-88debe8d8b6f
Lust, Katherine
4e14d300-d344-4a1f-a2e7-b0e89d31fdfe
Grant, Jon E.
68b74bfc-0910-4325-aa34-24d285abfc19
Solly, Jeremy E.
b3341839-0b3c-4660-be99-af4f8178a99f
Chamberlain, Samuel
8a0e09e6-f51f-4039-9287-88debe8d8b6f
Lust, Katherine
4e14d300-d344-4a1f-a2e7-b0e89d31fdfe
Grant, Jon E.
68b74bfc-0910-4325-aa34-24d285abfc19

Solly, Jeremy E., Chamberlain, Samuel, Lust, Katherine and Grant, Jon E. (2021) Binge-eating disorder in students: high prevalence and strong link to impulsive and compulsive traits. CNS Spectrums, 28 (1), 61-69. (doi:10.1017/S1092852921000882).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Objective: Binge Eating Disorder (BED) is the most common eating disorder, and is associated with significant comorbidity, with university students being particularly vulnerable. We aimed to assess associations of BED with a wide range of comorbidities and measures of impulsivity and compulsivity in university students, to gain better understanding of its prevalence, correlates and pathophysiology.

Method: We carried out an internet-based survey, assessing presence of BED using a validated structured self-report diagnostic tool, demographics, substance use, impulsive behaviours, psychiatric history and measures of impulsivity and compulsivity. Approximately 10,000 students were invited to take part. Group differences between students with current BED and students without BED were investigated.
Results: 3415 students completed the survey, with 83 (2.4%) screening positive for BED. BED was associated with female gender, hazardous/harmful alcohol use, depression and anxiety symptoms, low self-esteem, post-traumatic stress disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, treatment for psychological/emotional problems (including prescribed medication) and trait impulsivity and compulsivity. However, the largest effect sizes were evident for associations with trait impulsivity and compulsivity.

Conclusions: The associations of BED with trait impulsivity and compulsivity implicate these latent phenotypes in its pathophysiology. The identified links between BED and a wide range of mental disorders highlight the need to screen for disordered eating in student populations, including when students present with other mental health conditions.

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BED revised -9-18-21 - Accepted Manuscript
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 20 September 2021
e-pub ahead of print date: 18 October 2021
Additional Information: Funding: This research was funded in whole, or in part, by Wellcome (110049/Z/15/Z & 110049/Z/15/A). For the purpose of open access, the author has applied a CC BY public copyright licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising from this submission. Dr Solly’s role in this study was funded by the East Anglian Foundation Programme.

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 451599
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/451599
ISSN: 1092-8529
PURE UUID: 384dbbec-a795-4811-92eb-10328f80e707
ORCID for Samuel Chamberlain: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7014-8121

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Date deposited: 13 Oct 2021 16:30
Last modified: 09 Mar 2023 03:00

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Contributors

Author: Jeremy E. Solly
Author: Samuel Chamberlain ORCID iD
Author: Katherine Lust
Author: Jon E. Grant

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