Eating Disorders and Disordered Weight and Shape Control Behaviors in Sexual Minority Populations
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Purpose of Review
This review summarized trends and key findings from empirical studies conducted between 2011 and 2017 regarding eating disorders and disordered weight and shape control behaviors among lesbian, gay, bisexual, and other sexual minority (i.e., non-heterosexual) populations.
Recent research has examined disparities through sociocultural and minority stress approaches. Sexual minorities continue to demonstrate higher rates of disordered eating; disparities are more pronounced among males. Emerging data indicates elevated risk for disordered eating pathology among sexual minorities who are transgender or ethnic minorities. Dissonance-based eating disorder prevention programs may hold promise for sexual minority males.
Continued research must examine the intersections of sexual orientation, gender, and ethnic identities, given emergent data that eating disorder risk may be most prominent among specific subgroups. More research is needed within sexual minorities across the lifespan. There is still a lack of eating disorder treatment and prevention studies for sexual minorities.
KeywordsSexual orientation Disordered eating Body image Anabolic steroids Appearance and performance enhancing drugs
Dr. Calzo was supported by K01DA034753. Dr. Blashill was supported by K23MH096647. We would like to thank Kathryn Houk and Hannah Saquilayan for their assistance in preparing this review.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Jerel P. Calzo reports a grant from NIH/NIDA (K01DA034753).
Aaron J. Blashill, Tiffany A. Brown, and Russell L. Argenal each declare no potential conflicts of interest.
Human and Animal Rights
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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