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Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology

, Volume 39, Issue 8, pp 647–654 | Cite as

Epidemiological studies on adverse dieting behaviours and eating disorders among young people in Hungary

  • T. Tölgyes
  • J. Nemessury
ORIGINAL PAPER

Abstract

Background

Most results on the prevalence rates of eating disorders and related adverse dieting attitudes have been published in North America and Western Europe and there have been only a few pioneering surveys conducted in Central and Eastern Europe in this domain. The authors investigated the prevalence rates for anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and related adverse dieting attitudes and eating behaviours among secondary school and college students in Budapest and Pécs in the second half of the 1990s.

Methods

In the process of a two–stage study, a series of internationally approved tests were carried out as a screening examination and a semi–structured diagnostic interview was conducted. These techniques were also applied in a comparative study of a class of secondary school ballet students.

Results

Of the overall female sample, 3% revealed an anorexic disposition, but no actual cases of anorexia were detected; 25% of the ballet students corresponded to the criteria of simulated anorexia. In addition, 4.5% of the females and 0.8% of the males were classified as subclinical bulimics, whereas 3.6% of the females and 0.4% of the males could be listed in the category of simulated bulimia nervosa. The prevalence rate of bulimia nervosa defined by DSM-IV, which could be proved by the diagnostic interview, was 0.6%.

Conclusions

Body ideal of thinness in young women has a significant effect on their self–esteem. The prevalence rate of adverse eating behaviours and bulimia nervosa in Hungary has been found to be similar to the scores published in the Western countries.

Key words

anorexia nervosa bulimia nervosa epidemiological studies 

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Copyright information

© Steinkopff Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Tölgyes
    • 1
  • J. Nemessury
    • 1
  1. 1.Semmelweis University of MedicineDept. of Psychiatry & PsychotherapyBudapestHungary

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