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Comparison of factors associated with disordered eating between male and female Malaysian university students


Chin, Yit Siew and Appukutty, Mahenderan and Kagawa, Masaharu and Gan, Wan Ying and Wong, Jyh Eiin and Poh, Bee Koon and Mohd Shariff, Zalilah and Mohd Taib, Mohd Nasir (2020) Comparison of factors associated with disordered eating between male and female Malaysian university students. Nutrients, 12 (2). art. no. 318. pp. 1-15. ISSN 2072-6643


Disordered eating is prevalent among university students, especially females. Whilst literature suggests that factors associated with disordered eating may differ according to gender, such an association has not been studied in Malaysia. This cross-sectional study aims to compare factors associated with disordered eating between male and female university students. A total of 716 university students (male: 27.4%; female: 72.6%) were recruited in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, Malaysia. All participants completed a set of self-administered questionnaires and their body weight and height were recorded. About one in five of the university students (20.3%) were found to have disordered eating. There were more female students (22.9%) disordered eating compared to males (13.3%, χ2 = 8.16, p < 0.05). In male students (β = 0.228, p < 0.01), depressive symptoms were the only significant predictor for disordered eating. In females, the strongest predictor was depressive symptoms (β = 0.214, p < 0.001), followed by body size satisfaction (β = −0.145, p < 0.01) and body appreciation (β = −0.101, p < 0.05). These findings suggest that there are gender differences in the factors associated with disordered eating among Malaysian university students. Intervention programmes that address disordered eating should take into account these sex differences and its contributing factors.

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Official URL or Download Paper: https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/12/2/318

Additional Metadata

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Science
DOI Number: https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12020318
Publisher: MDPI
Keywords: Disordered eating; Malaysia; University students; Body image; Depressive symptoms
Depositing User: Nabilah Mustapa
Date Deposited: 03 May 2020 23:03
Last Modified: 03 May 2020 23:03
Altmetrics: http://www.altmetric.com/details.php?domain=psasir.upm.edu.my&doi=10.3390/nu12020318
URI: http://psasir.upm.edu.my/id/eprint/38174
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