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  • Poster presentation
  • Open Access

Changes in eating attitudes and behaviours in a sample of female university students studying health degrees: a 12-months follow-up study.

Journal of Eating Disorders20153 (Suppl 1) :P9

  • Published:


  • Eating Disorder
  • Body Dissatisfaction
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Eating Attitude
  • Body Satisfaction

It remains unclear if studying a health-related degree alters an individual's eating attitudes and diet-related behaviours. This study explored changes in eating attitudes and behaviours in 36 female students (mean age 28.6 ±10.0 years) enrolled in health degrees (Nutrition and Dietetics, n=26; Occupational Therapy, n=10) over a year of their undergraduate studies. Participants were asked to complete several self-reported questionnaires, including the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26), the Three-Factor Eating Questionnaire (TFEQ-R18), the Rosenberg's Self-Esteem Scale, and the Body Shape Questionnaire (BSQ-8D) that assessed their demographic, anthropometric, dietary, body satisfaction and self-esteem related characteristics in September-October 2013 and again 12 months later. Results suggest a significant decrease in eating disorder risk and body dissatisfaction, with an increase in self-esteem. However, the participants' weight, cognitive restraint, uncontrolled eating and emotional eating remained stable. The associations between the explored characteristics will be presented on a group and individual level. Possible directions for future research in this population will be outlined.

Authors’ Affiliations

University of the Sunshine Coast, Sunshine Coast, Australia


© Rocks et al. 2015

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.