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Conceptualisations of health in orthorexia nervosa: a mixed-methods study.

Greville-Harris, M., Talbot, C. V., Moseley, R. L. and Vuillier, L., 2022. Conceptualisations of health in orthorexia nervosa: a mixed-methods study. Eating and Weight Disorders: studies on anorexia, bulimia and obesity. (In Press)

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DOI: 10.1007/s40519-022-01443-1

Abstract

Purpose Limited research has explored conceptualisations of health and healthy eating in orthorexia nervosa (ON). This mixed-methods study aimed to investigate how ‘health’ and ‘healthy eating’ are conceptualised by individuals at risk for ON. This study examined the potential relationships between health anxiety, beliefs about health controllability and orthorexic symptomatology in our broader sample. Methods A total of 362 participants took a survey on health anxiety (measured with the HAQ), beliefs about the controllability of one’s own health (IMHLC) and ON symptomatology (E-DOS and EHQ). Participants ‘at risk’ for ON (n=141), also completed an online qualitative survey about conceptualisations of health and healthy eating. Qualitative data were analysed using thematic analysis (part A). The PROCESS macro for SPSS was used for the quantitative analysis (part B). Results Conceptualisations of health and healthy eating were complex. Four themes were generated from our qualitativedata: ‘health is more than thin ideals’, ‘healthy food equals healthy mind’, ‘a body that works for you’ and ‘taking control of your body’. Our quantitative analysis revealed that health anxiety and beliefs in health controllability independently predicted ON symptomatology. Conclusion A richer understanding of what health means in the context of ON is important, given the centrality of this concept to the proposed classifcation of this disordered eating style. Our fndings highlight that both health anxiety and health controllability are important targets for future investigation, given their potential relevance to the aetiology and treatment of ON.

Item Type:Article
ISSN:1124-4909
Uncontrolled Keywords:Orthorexia nervosa; Disordered eating; Healthy eating; Dietary control; Health anxiety; Eating Disorders
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:37279
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:26 Jul 2022 15:27
Last Modified:29 Jul 2022 10:44

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