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Comparison of overweight and obese military-dependent and civilian adolescent girls with loss-of-control eating.

Publication Status: Published

Sponsoring Organization: Defense Health Agency (formerly TRICARE Management Activity)

Sponsoring Office: Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences

Congressionally Mandated: No

Funding Source: Undetermined

Release Date/Publication:

Principle Investigator Status: Government

Primary DoD Data Source: Other Survey

Secondary DoD Data Source:


Limited data suggest that the children of U.S. service members may be at increased risk for disordered-eating. To date, no study has directly compared adolescent military-dependents to their civilian peers along measures of eating pathology and associated correlates. We, therefore, compared overweight and obese adolescent female military-dependents to their civilian counterparts along measures of eating-related pathology and psychosocial functioning.

Adolescent females with a BMI between the 85th and 97th percentiles and who reported loss-of-control eating completed interview and questionnaire assessments of eating-related and general psychopathology.

Twenty-three military-dependents and 105 civilians participated. Controlling for age, race, and BMI-z, military-dependents reported significantly more binge episodes per month (p < 0.01), as well as greater eating-concern, shape-concern, and weight-concern (p's < 0.01) than civilians. Military-dependents also reported more severe depression (p < 0.05).

Adolescent female military-dependents may be particularly vulnerable to disordered-eating compared with civilian peers. This potential vulnerability should be considered when assessing military-dependents.


Schvey NA, et al., Comparison of overweight and obese military-dependent and civilian adolescent girls with loss-of-control eating. Int J Eat Disord. 2015 Sep;48(6):790-4.

Last Updated: July 11, 2023
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