Subjective and objective binge eating in relation to eating disorder symptomatology, negative affect, and personality dimensions

Lisa M. Brownstone, Anna M. Bardone-Cone, Ellen E. Fitzsimmons-Craft, Katherine S. Printz, Daniel Le Grange, James E. Mitchell, Scott J. Crow, Carol B. Peterson, Ross D. Crosby, Marjorie H. Klein, Stephen A. Wonderlich, Thomas E. Joiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: The current study explored the clinical meaningfulness of distinguishing subjective (SBE) from objective binge eating (OBE) among individuals with threshold/subthreshold bulimia nervosa (BN). We examined relations between OBEs and SBEs and eating disorder symptoms, negative affect, and personality dimensions using both a group comparison and a continuous approach. Method: Participants were 204 adult females meeting criteria for threshold/subthreshold BN who completed questionnaires related to disordered eating, affect, and personality. Results: Group comparisons indicated that SBE and OBE groups did not significantly differ on eating disorder pathology or negative affect, but did differ on two personality dimensions (cognitive distortion and attentional impulsivity). Using the continuous approach, we found that frequencies of SBEs (not OBEs) accounted for unique variance in weight/shape concern, diuretic use frequency, depressive symptoms, anxiety, social avoidance, insecure attachment, and cognitive distortion. Discussion: SBEs in the context of BN may indicate broader areas of psychopathology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)66-76
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume46
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2013

Keywords

  • affect
  • bulimia nervosa
  • objective binge eating
  • personality
  • subjective binge eating

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