Weight concern, dieting and eating behaviors. A survey of Israeli high school girls

Yael Latzer, Orna Tzischinsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The main goal of the present study was to explore some of the risk-factor variables for eating disorders among Israeli junior high and high school adolescent girls (12-18 years old) from different residential areas in the northern district of Israel. Additionally, this study examined and identified which group was most prone to develop disordered eating behaviors and attitudes. Method: A representative sample of 1,316 Jewish adolescent females from five Israeli school sub-groups and from five different residential areas was selected proportionally to various school sub-groups and residential areas. The Eating Disorder Inventory-2 (EDI-2) was the assessment tool used, yielding scores on 11 sub-scales. Results: In regard to age, the 16.6-18 year-olds were found to have significantly higher total EDI-2 scores, as compared to the other age groups. Girls aged 16.6 and up were found to have the highest score in six sub-scales out of eleven. As for different types of schools in different residential settings, the secular boarding school sub-group had the significantly highest scores, while the kibbutz sub-group had the lowest scores for the total EDI-2, as well as for most subscales. The majority of scores for the other school sub-groups fell midway between the two extreme groups. Discussion: The results are discussed in terms of cultural, religious, ethnic, and socio-economic influences. Conclusion: The results highlight the need to conduct a systematic methodological study comparing various psychological and socioeconomic factors, including maladaptive eating behavior in different types of religious residential schools.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-305
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescents
  • Disordered eating behavior
  • Eating attitudes
  • Females
  • Israel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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