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Significant nutritional variables in patients with eating disorders

Retrospective chart analysis of 113 patients presenting to a general practitioner with eating disorders was conducted, in an attempt to identify statistically and clinically significant nutritional variables. Blood tests are a useful diagnostic tool in eating disorders, and this research suggests that current testing should be broadened to include trace minerals such as zinc and manganese.

Results were analysed for cholesterol, red blood cell folate, vitamin B12, magnesium, manganese, zinc, vitamin D, phosphate, ferritin, white cell count, red cell count and platelets. Patients were analysed as an entire group, but also separately as those suffering from Anorexia Nervosa (1), Bulimia Nervosa (2), EDNOS (3) and classic AN followed by BN (4).

Analysis using T tests and chi squared showed that variables most likely to lie outside the population reference range were manganese, cholesterol, ferritin, vitamin B12, zinc and vitamin D.

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Correspondence to Leanne Barron.

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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. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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Barron, L., Barron, R., Johnson, J. et al. Significant nutritional variables in patients with eating disorders. J Eat Disord 3 (Suppl 1), O62 (2015).

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