Objective: To investigate the psychometric properties of the Body Uneasiness Test (BUT) in a large sample of subjects with obesity seeking treatment. BUT is a 71-item self-report questionnaire in two parts: BUT-A which measures weight phobia, body image concerns, avoidance, compulsive self-monitoring, detachment and estrangement feelings towards one's own body (depersonalization); and BUT-B, which looks at specific worries about particular body parts or functions.
Methods: We recruited a clinical sample of 1,812 adult subjects (age range 18-65 years, females 1,411, males 401) with obesity (Body Mass Index, BMI > or = 30 kg/m2) and a normal weight (BMI value between 18.5 and 25 kg/m2) non-clinical sample of 457 adult subjects (females 248, males 209) with an Eating Attitudes Test-26 (EAT-26) score under the cut-off point 20 (scores > or = 20 indicate possible cases of eating disorders).
Results: The exploratory and confirmatory analyses confirmed a structural five-factor model for BUT-A and an eight-factor model for BUT-B. Internal consistency was satisfactory. Concurrent validity with Binge Eating Scale (BES) and Three-Factor Eating Questionnaire (TFEQ) was evaluated. The authors calculated mean values for BUT scores in adult (18-65 years) patients with obesity, and evaluated the influence of gender, age and BMI. Females obtained statistically significant higher scores than males in all age groups and in all classes of obesity; patients with obesity, compared with normal weight subjects, generally obtained statistically significant higher scores, but few differences could be attributed to the influence of BMI.
Conclusion: The BUT can be a valuable multidimensional tool for the clinical assessment of body uneasiness in obesity; the scores of its sub-scales do not show a linear correlation with BMI values.