Disordered eating and its psychosocial correlates among Chinese adolescent females in Hong Kong

Int J Eat Disord. 1996 Sep;20(2):177-83. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1098-108X(199609)20:2<177::AID-EAT8>3.0.CO;2-D.


Objectives: To study the prevalence of disordered eating and its relationship with body dissatisfaction, family dysfunction, and depression among Chinese adolescent females in Hong Kong.

Method: Two hundred ninety-four schoolgirls completed a demographic and weight history sheet, Eating Attitudes Test-26, Body Dissatisfaction Scale, cohesion and conflict subscales of the Family Environment Scale, and the Beck Depression Inventory.

Results: 6.5% of subjects were EAT-26 high scores. Disordered eating was positively predicted by body dissatisfaction and, to a lesser extent, family cohesion and conflict. Body dissatisfaction was in turn positively predicted by depression, which was negatively predicted by family cohesion.

Discussion: Western patterns of body dissatisfaction and disordered eating attitudes are common among Chinese adolescent females. In the presence of psychosocial vulnerability factors, more weight control behavior and eating disorders may be expected to arise in Hong Kong.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anorexia Nervosa / ethnology
  • Anorexia Nervosa / psychology*
  • Body Image*
  • Bulimia / ethnology
  • Bulimia / psychology*
  • China / ethnology
  • Depression / ethnology
  • Depression / psychology*
  • Family / psychology*
  • Female
  • Hong Kong
  • Humans
  • Prevalence
  • Psychology, Adolescent*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Surveys and Questionnaires