Simona Pajaujienė


The majority of adolescents adopt what would be considered healthy eating and exercise behavior, but at the same time, a noticeable number use weight control methods considered to be unhealthy (Caroll et al., 2006). There is some evidence that disordered eating, body dissatisfaction, and excessive exercise might influence the presence of one another. The aim of the present study was to examine the associations between physical activity (PA), attitude towards unhealthy weight control exercise behavior (UEB) and risk of eating disorders (ED), and to reveal exertion of these factors by sex and frequency of exercise. Methods. The sample consisted of 470 participants  (240 girls) from Kaunas 16 schools. Mean age (SD) = 14,97 (0,41) years. Leisure time exercsise (LTEQ;  Godin & Shephard, 1985), attitude towards eating (EAT-26;  Garner et al., 1982), attitude towards UEB related with exercise (self-constructed 5 item scale) were assessed by anonymous questionnairing. Results. The attitude of majority participants toward exercising behavior for weight control was not correct, missing of a proper understanding about dosage of PA and exercising behavior. PA were not related neither to ED, nor attitude towards UEB, but frequency of exercising were significantly associated with beneficial attitude toward UEB, and UEB were directly related to ED. Girls compared to boys expressed higher risk of ED, less PA and more proper attitude towards weight loss exercise behavior. Conclusions. Essential educational impact for teaching adolescent weight control behavior: positive body image, proper nutrition and exercising behavior.

Keyword(s): adolescence, weight control, physical activity, eating disorders.
DOI: 10.5200/140
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