Disordered Eating Pathology and Body Image Among Adolescent Girls in Israel: The Role of Sense of Coherence

Yael Latzer, Sarah L. Weinberger-Litman, Zohar Spivak-Lavi, Orna Tzischinsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Disordered eating pathology (DEP) represents a range of behaviors and attitudes, from negative body image to full blown eating disorders, appearing mainly in adolescent females. DEP is related to a plethora of biological and psychological factors, including various coping strategies. Sense of coherence (SOC) is a coping mechanism defined as an external and internal ability to adapt to stress and has been found to be associated with better mental health outcomes. However, SOC has not been examined in relation to DEP. Therefore, the aim of this study is to examine the relationship between SOC, DEP and body image disturbances among adolescent girls. The sample consisted of 248 Israeli girls (12–18), who completed self-reported questionnaires. SOC was negatively associated with DEP and body dissatisfaction. The overall rate of those in the high risk group for EDs was found to be higher than previously seen among samples from a similar population (22.5% vs. 19.5%), and was found to have a significantly lower levels of SOC and more negative body image than those at lower risk. Greater SOC was found to be associated with lower levels of DEP. It is suggested that strengthening SOC be incorporated into eating disorder prevention and treatment. Results emphasize the importance of SOC to well-being and mental health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1246-1252
Number of pages7
JournalCommunity Mental Health Journal
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.


  • Adolescents
  • Body image
  • Disordered eating
  • Females
  • Sense of coherence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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