A cross-cultural comparison of the eating disorder inventory

Authors

  • Iris Podar MSc,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Psychology, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia
    2. The Estonian Centre of Behavioural and Health Sciences, Tartu, Estonia
    • Department of Psychology, University of Tartu, Tiigi 78, 50410 Tartu, Estonia
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  • Jüri Allik PhD

    1. Department of Psychology, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia
    2. The Estonian Centre of Behavioural and Health Sciences, Tartu, Estonia
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Abstract

Objective:

A systematic analysis of data collected with the Eating Disorder Inventory (EDI) was made.

Method:

A literature search identified 94 sources in which the mean values of the EDI or EDI-2 subscales were reported, comprising 310 samples differing by sex, age, diagnosis, language, ethnicity, or some other relevant attribute. The total number of respondents was 43,722, from 25 different countries, having used the EDI in one of the 16 languages (1–94).

Results:

The factorial structure of the aggregate means of the EDI subscales, for both clinical versus nonclinical and Western versus non-Western samples, was almost identical suggesting generalizability across languages and cultures. Non-Western participants scored higher than Western participants on virtually all EDI subscales, both in normal and eating-disordered samples. It was shown that age is a risk factor when someone is already diagnosed with an eating disorder but, in the general population, increasing age reduces the likelihood of being afflicted by eating disorders.

Discussion:

Symptoms of eating disorders are more pronounced in non-Western than in Western samples. © 2008 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2009

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