Depressed girls more likely to binge eat

Feb. 28, 2012 at 10:50 AM

BOSTON, Feb. 28 (UPI) -- U.S. teenage girls who feel depressed are twice as likely to start binge eating, U.S. researchers found.

"Girls who started off binge eating were about two times as likely as their peers to start feeling depressed," Alison Field of the Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston said in a statement. "So really, the association went both ways."

It's really important for pediatricians or family practitioners to ask very simple questions to screen for both binge eating and depressive symptoms in their patients, Field said.

The findings used data from the nationwide Growing Up Today Study. Participants are the more than 10,000 children ages 16-23 of women in the second cohort of the Nurses' Health Study.

The study was published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

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