Expectancies related to thinness, dietary restriction, eating, and alcohol consumption in women with bulimia nervosa

Authors

  • Kenneth Bruce PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Eating Disorders Program, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Montreal, Quebec
    2. Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec
    • Eating Disorders Program, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, 6875 LaSalle Blvd. Montreal, QC, Canada H4H 1R3
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  • Sandra Mansour MA,

    1. Eating Disorders Program, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Montreal, Quebec
    2. Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec
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  • Howard Steiger PhD

    1. Eating Disorders Program, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Montreal, Quebec
    2. Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec
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Abstract

Objective:

To investigate behavior-outcome expectancies relating to thinness, dietary restriction, eating, and alcohol consumption in women with bulimia nervosa (BN).

Method:

Women with BN (N = 29), women with BN and a co-morbid lifetime alcohol use disorder (AUD; N = 18), and control women (N = 24), completed interviews and questionnaires assessing eating- and alcohol-related symptoms, as well as questionnaires measuring expectancies relating to thinness, dietary restriction, eating, and alcohol consumption.

Results:

Compared with the control group, both bulimic groups reported greater positive expectancies relating to thinness, dietary restriction and eating; expectancy endorsements were also predictive of the severity of eating-related symptoms. Compared with the other groups, the bulimic group with comorbid lifetime AUD had elevated positive alcohol-related expectancies, and alcohol expectancy endorsements predicted severity of alcohol-related symptoms.

Discussion:

Women with BN endorsed more positive expectancies relating to thinness, dietary restriction, and eating, whereas women with BN and a lifetime comorbid AUD endorsed more positive alcohol expectancies. The results are consistent with expectancy theory in that positive expectancy endorsements were associated with symptom severity in a syndrome-specific manner. Expectancies related to thinness, dietary restriction, eating, and alcohol consumption in women with BN. © 2008 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2009

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