Effect of Emotion Regulation Difficulty on Eating Attitudes and Body Mass Index in University Students: A Cross-Sectional Study
1Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Faculty of Health Science, Üsküdar University, 34664 Istanbul, Turkey
2Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Faculty of Health Science, Ankara University, 06560 Ankara, Turkey
DOI: 10.31083/j.jomh1810199 Vol.18,Issue 10,October 2022 pp.1-9
Published: 26 October 2022
*Corresponding Author(s): Müge Arslan E-mail: email@example.com
Background: Emotion regulation challenges may be a general risk factor for disordered eating habits, and particularly during the univer-sity period, which entails processes such as young people moving away from their families and adjusting to new environments. This study examined the effect of difficulty in emotion regulation on eating attitudes and body mass index (BMI) in university students. Methods: A questionnaire form including questions about sociodemographic characteristics, questions about eating habits, the Difficulty in Emotion Regulation Scale (DERS-16), and the Eating Attitudes Test-40 (EAT-40) was administered to 750 undergraduate students at Üsküdar University. Data were analyzed with IBM SPSS Statistics 26. Results: Of the 750 students participating in this study, 47% were male and 53% were female. The average BMI of the students was 22.43 (20.44–24.80) kg/m2. There was a statistically significant positive and very weak correlation (s = 0.179; p < 0.001) between DERS-16 scores and BMI values, and an increase of 18% was found in DERS-16 scores as BMI values increased. There was also a statistically significant and very weak correlation (s = 0.174; p < 0.001) between the students’ EAT-40 scores and BMI values, and an increase of 17% was found in EAT-40 scores as students’ BMI values increased. Students’ BMI values were significantly correlated with DERS-16 scores (R2 = 0.033; F = 25.324; p < 0.001) and a one-point increase in the DERS-16 score resulted in a 4% increase in BMI. It was found that as the DERS-16 total score increased, there was a decrease in obesity anxiety, preoccupation with thinness and EAT-40 Total score (respectively 10.9%, 14.4%, 7.3%). Conclusions: Difficulties in emotion regulation may be correlated with BMI and eating attitude.
eating attitudes; body mass index; emotion regulation; emotions; obesity
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