, Volume 1, Issue 2, pp 123-132

Development and validation of the Eating Behavior Inventory

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The Eating Behavior Inventory (EBI) is a self-report instrument for assessing behaviors that have been theoretically implicated in weight loss, e.g., self-monitoring of food intake and of weight, refusing offers of food, eating at only one place, shopping from a list, eating in response to emotions. Thirty items were constructed in the form of first-person statements, e.g., “I eat in the middle of the night.” Each item was to be rated with a 5-point scale according to how often it was true for the respondent. Items were scored such that higher scores always reflected more “appropriate” (theoretically facilitative of weight control) eating patterns. Validity of individual items and total score was assessed in four studies. Twenty-six of the original items appeared valid and were retained. The resulting total score demonstrated validity in these studies and in two cross-validational comparisons. Internal consistency as measured by split-half reliability and correlations of item scores with total score was acceptable. One month test-retest reliability of item and total scores was satisfactory. Clinical and research applications of the EBI are discussed.