The Association of a High Drive for Thinness With Energy Deficiency and Severe Menstrual Disturbances: Confirmation in a Large Population of Exercising Women

Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2011 Aug;21(4):280-90. doi: 10.1123/ijsnem.21.4.280.

Abstract

A high drive-for-thinness (DT) score obtained from the Eating Disorder Inventory-2 is associated with surrogate markers of energy deficiency in exercising women. The purposes of this study were to confirm the association between DT and energy deficiency in a larger population of exercising women that was previously published and to compare the distribution of menstrual status in exercising women when categorized as high vs. normal DT. A high DT was defined as a score ≥7, corresponding to the 75th percentile for college-age women. Exercising women age 22.9 ± 4.3 yr with a BMI of 21.2 ± 2.2 kg/m2 were retrospectively grouped as high DT (n = 27) or normal DT (n = 90) to compare psychometric, energetic, and reproductive characteristics. Chi-square analyses were performed to compare the distribution of menstrual disturbances between groups. Measures of resting energy expenditure (REE) (4,949 ± 494 kJ/day vs. 5,406 ± 560 kJ/day, p < .001) and adjusted REE (123 ± 16 kJ/LBM vs. 130 ± 9 kJ/LBM, p = .027) were suppressed in exercising women with high DT vs. normal DT, respectively. Ratio of measured REE to predicted REE (pREE) in the high-DT group was 0.85 ± 0.10, meeting the authors' operational definition for an energy deficiency (REE:pREE <0.90). A greater prevalence of severe menstrual disturbances such as amenorrhea and oligomenorrhea was observed in the high-DT group (χ2 = 9.3, p = .003) than in the normal-DT group. The current study confirms the association between a high DT score and energy deficiency in exercising women and demonstrates a greater prevalence of severe menstrual disturbances in exercising women with high DT.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anthropometry
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Drive
  • Energy Intake
  • Energy Metabolism
  • Estrone / blood
  • Exercise*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / complications
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Glucuronides / blood
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Luteinizing Hormone / blood
  • Malnutrition / complications
  • Malnutrition / epidemiology*
  • Menstrual Cycle
  • Menstruation Disturbances / complications
  • Menstruation Disturbances / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Thinness / physiopathology*
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Glucuronides
  • Estrone
  • Luteinizing Hormone