Prevalence of Eating Disorders and Disordered Eating Behaviors Among Male Collegiate Athletes

PREVALENCE OF EATING DISORDERS

Table 2
Prevalence of Eating and Pathogenic We
Control Behaviors (N = 203)
Behavior
Frequency of binge eating (i.e., eat
uncontrollably to the point of stuffing
yourself)
>2 times/week
2 times/week
Once a week
2-3 times/month
<Once a month or never
Duration of binge eating
3 or more years
1 to 3 years
3 months to one year
Less than 3 months
Don't binge eat
Exercise in order to burn calories
>2 hours/day
2 hours/day
1-2 hours/day
<1 hour/day
Don't exercise to burn calories
Tried to lose weight by fasting or going on
strict diets
>5 times in past year
4-5 times in past year
2-3 times in past year
Once in past year
Not in past year
Intentionally vomit after eating
>Twice a week
Once a week
2-3 times/month
Once a month
<Once a month or never
Use diuretics to help control weight
>3 times/week
1-2 times/week
2-3 times/month
Once a month
<Once a month or never
Use laxatives/suppositories to help control
weight
>Once a day
3-6 times/week
1-2 times/week
2-3 times/month
<Once a month or never
sample was classified as overweight o
strikingly large number given populi
mates that are much lower, around 32
n.d.b). Because self-reported wei
heights have been found to be valid
the reason for the higher prevalenc

overweight or obesity in this sample are likely
ight due to the fact that the participants were ath-
letes, and that 67% of those who were over-
n % weight or obese played football, and not inac-
curacy in how their BMIs were measured or
calculated. Athletes generally have a greater
ratio of lean muscle mass to body fat in com-
12 5.9 parison with nonathletes (CDC, n.d.a), and thus
7 3.4 their large BMIs are more representative of
15 7.4 muscularity than body fatness than would be
17 8.4
152 74.9 expected among those who do not participate in
sports at an advanced level but have similar
16 7.9 BMIs.
9 4.4 A second major finding relating to actual
10 4.9 body size was that fewer than 2% of the athletes
8 3.9 were underweight on the basis of their BMIs,
160 78.8 yet over one quarter of them were dissatisfied
33 16.3 with their weight and stated that this dissatis-
42 20.7 faction was due to their feeling underweight
20 9.9 (and wanting to gain weight). This finding
14 6.9 makes sense given the performance demands
94 46.3 associated with sport and the advantages that
come from being stronger and more muscular
13 6.4 (and thus heavier). This finding also is consis-
7 3.4 tent with past research that has shown men's
9 4.4 dissatisfaction with their weight and body size
18 8.9 to be due primarily to being underweight and to
156 76.8 possessing inadequate musculature (e.g., Mc-
Cabe & Ricciardelli, 2004; Raudenbush &
4 2.0
6 3.0 Meyer, 2003). For example, Raudenbush and
3 1.5 Meyer (2003) reported that the collegiate male
0 0.0 athletes they examined believed their actual
190 93.6 physique was smaller, lighter, and less muscular
than their ideal sport physique as well as the
3 1.5 physique they believed was attractive to the
6 3.0
6 2.5 opposite sex. Thus, male athletes appear to ex-
9 4.4 perience pressure to achieve a lean, muscular
180 88.7 physique, not only to improve their sport per-
formances, but also to be considered attractive
by women. These pressures or drive to achieve
8 3.9 a muscular physique are associated with a host
3 1.5 of negative psychological outcomes, including
5 2.5
0 0.0 lower self-esteem, disordered eating behaviors,
187 92.1 the tendency to compare one's appearance to
others, and internalization of the sociocultural
ideal of attractiveness (Tylka, Bergeron, &
Schwartz, 2005).
r obese, a Although male athletes generally consume
nation esti- large quantities of food, a necessary reality so
% (CDC, they can meet their energy expenditure needs,
ghts and the majority (74.9%) indicated that they did not
measures, binge eat. This finding suggests that male ath-
Srates of letes likely consume large quantities of food,

273

Petrie, Trent A.; Greenleaf, Christy; Reel, Justine J. & Carter, Jennifer. Prevalence of Eating Disorders and Disordered Eating Behaviors Among Male Collegiate Athletes. [Washington, D.C.]. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31092/. Accessed October 21, 2014.