Background: Intuitive eating is an adaptive eating tendency consistently associated with positive physical and mental health outcomes, including lower risk for obesity and eating disorders (EDs). Obesity rates are disproportionately high in Hispanic American populations, yet the properties of intuitive eating remain to be examined in such samples.
Method: The current study examined the psychometric properties of the Intuitive Eating Scale-2 (IES-2) in a Hispanic American sample of adult college students (N=482), and related IES-2 scores to levels of disordered eating, body mass index (BMI), fruit and vegetable consumption, and body shape satisfaction.
Results: The final confirmatory factor analysis supported a three factor, 11 item measure with the subscales of Eating for Physical Rather Than Emotional Reasons, Reliance on Hunger and Satiety Cues, and Body Food Choice Congruence. The Unconditional Permission to Eat subscale could not be replicated in the current sample. As predicted, scores on the revised measure differed by BMI category and body shape satisfaction, and correlated with disordered eating tendencies and fruit and vegetable consumption.
Conclusion: The current findings demonstrate that the modified IES-2 is better tailored to assess the cultural nuances influencing intuitive eating and can advance understanding how intuitive eating is understood and practiced in Hispanic Americans, compared to the original measure.
Keywords: Cultural differences; Disordered eating; Hispanic; Intuitive eating; Obesity.
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