The goals of this study were to assess eating disorder symptoms in depressed women with no history of eating disturbance and to evaluate the clinical significance of these symptoms relative to those reported by women with bulimia spectrum disorder.
Participants were 63 women with major depressive disorder (MDD) (n = 19), bulimia spectrum disorder (n = 20), or no history of MDD or eating disorder (n = 24). Measures included diagnostic interviews and self-report questionnaires designed to assess diagnostic criteria for bulimia nervosa, subthreshold eating disorder symptoms, dysfunctional attitudes about appearance, and body dissatisfaction.
There were no significant differences between depressed and bulimic women on shape concerns, appearance overvaluation, or body dissatisfaction. Depressed women endorsed significantly more subthreshold eating disorder symptoms, dysfunctional attitudes about appearance, and body dissatisfaction than did control subjects.
Eating disorder symptoms may be associated with depression in women in the absence of comorbid eating disorder diagnoses. © 2005 by Wiley Periodocals, Inc.