Disordered eating and body dissatisfaction in adolescents with type 1 diabetes and a population-based comparison sample: Comparative prevalence and clinical implications

Diann M. Ackard, Nicole Vik, Dianne Neumark-Sztainer, Kathryn H. Schmitz, Peter Hannan, David R. Jacobs

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60 Scopus citations


Objective: To compare the prevalence of disordered eating and body dissatisfaction between adolescents with type 1 diabetes and a population-based sample of youth. Subjects: A clinic-based sample of 143 adolescents (73 male and 70 female) with type 1 diabetes who participated in the Assessing Health and Eating among Adolescents with Diabetes (AHEAD) study was compared with a population-based sample of 4746 youths (2377 male, 2357 female, and 12 missing) who participated in Project Eating Among Teens (Project EAT). Method: Participants completed surveys and anthropometric measurements of height and weight. Results: Although some adolescents with type 1 diabetes endorsed unhealthy weight control practices, overall, they reported less weight dissatisfaction and were less likely to use any unhealthy weight control behaviors and more likely to report regular meal consumption than the population-based sample. Females with type 1 diabetes were less likely to report dieting, fasting, or eating very little food to control weight during the past year than their population-based peers. However, males with type 1 diabetes were less likely than their peers to exercise and to consume more fruits and vegetables for healthy weight control. Of medical concern were insulin omission (1.4% males and 10.3% females) and dosage reduction (1.4% males and 7.4% females) as means of weight control among youth with type 1 diabetes. Conclusions: Despite medical supervision, some adolescents with type 1 diabetes reported unhealthy weight control behaviors and weight concerns, including insulin manipulation. Altering the insulin regimen may cause complications. All adolescents warrant attention for unhealthy behaviors and weight concerns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)312-319
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric Diabetes
Issue number4 PART 1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2008


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Internal Medicine
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism

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