Body dissatisfaction and restrained eating in male juvenile and adult athletes

Eat Weight Disord. 2008 Mar;13(1):14-21. doi: 10.1007/BF03327780.


Athletes of light-weight sport classes are under a constant strain to control eating and body shape, which can make them prone to develop eating disorders. In the present study, cognitive control of eating (restrained eating) and body dissatisfaction were investigated in male elite athletes of light-weight and heavy-weight classes at different ages. Body dissatisfaction was assessed under hunger and satiety. Adult light-weight rowers had extremely high scores of restrained eating and a more pronounced body dissatisfaction under hunger compared to satiety in contrast to heavy-weight rowers. Juvenile light-weight rowers had a pronounced cognitive control of eating behavior while body dissatisfaction was not affected by weight-class or hunger. The results suggest that extensive participation in a light-weight sport increases the cognitive control of eating behavior but not the disinhibition of cognitive control of eating. High levels of cognitive control of eating in the adult lightweight rowers are accompanied with body dissatisfaction under hunger but not under satiety.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Body Image*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cognition*
  • Feeding Behavior / psychology*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / etiology
  • Humans
  • Hunger
  • Male
  • Risk Factors
  • Satiation
  • Self Concept
  • Sports*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Thinness