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Very few studies examined the prevalence and sport-related predictors of disturbed eating attitudes and behaviors (DEAB) among adolescents involved in sport practice, and their results are mixed and inconclusive. These inconsistencies are most likely due to their methodological heterogeneity, and to the fact that none of these studies took into consideration the potentially relevant characteristics of the sport practice context. This study attempts to answer this limitation among French adolescents not-involved or involved in various sports contexts defined based on their organization, leanness-centration, and competitive level. Participants were 335 adolescents involved in sport practice, and 435 adolescents not-involved in any form of regular sport practice. The DEAB were measured using the Eating-Attitudes Test-26. Global results do not showed any significant association between the status of the participants and DEAB. However, these results drastically changed when we considered the potential moderating role of sex and age on these relations. Indeed, sports involvement in general, and involvement in leanness and competitive sports were found to exert sex and age differentiated effects on the risks of presenting clinically significant levels of DEAB. This study suggests the importance of monitoring, preventive and early intervention mechanisms within the context of practice, particularly for adolescent girls.


Institute for Positive Psychology and Education

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Open Access Journal Article

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Open Access

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Psychology Commons