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  • Oral presentation
  • Open Access

The next chapter in eating disorder prevention? Findings from a randomized controlled trial of a mindfulness-based intervention aimed at reducing risk for disordered eating

Journal of Eating Disorders20131 (Suppl 1) :O34

  • Published:


  • Negative Affect
  • Prevention Program
  • Disorder Behaviour
  • Eating Disorder
  • Adolescent Girl

The primary objective of this study was to evaluate a mindfulness-based prevention program against an established dissonance program with regard to reducing risk for disordered eating. Adolescent girls (N = 379, Mean age = 15.70, SD = 0.77) from four high schools were randomly allocated by class to receive either a mindfulness or dissonance-based program, delivered universally, or lessons as normal (assessment-only control). Standardised measures of eating disorder behaviours and related risk factors were completed at baseline, post-program, 1-month and 6-month follow-up. Controlling for baseline, results showed significant group differences over time for weight concerns (F (6, 663) = 3.74, p = .001), with both mindfulness and dissonance groups showing a greater reduction than control. No other variables demonstrated significant interactions, however main effects of time for dietary restraint, mindfulness, self-compassion, emotion dysregulation, negative affect, escape-avoidant coping, and media internalisation indicated overall improvement across groups. Improvements evident within the control group may suggest the presence of cross-contamination between classes or an impact of assessment. Further analysis is required to account for significant missing data across time points; however, these preliminary findings validate continued evaluation of mindfulness in this context.

This abstract was presented in the Prevention stream of the 2013 ANZAED Conference.

Authors’ Affiliations

Flinders University, Australia


© Atkinson and Wade; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2013

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.