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The article basically tries to enhance the challenges relating to epidemiological studies of eating and related body image disturbance disorders in males. Attention on the article focuses on disorders that are more likely to be observed among the males such as muscle dysmorphia. The study faces a number of challenges that limits the understanding of the study and correlates of these disorders in males. The heterogeneity of the Eating Disorder not otherwise specified (EDNOS) has meant that majority of studies have often yielded little descriptive information relating to the behavioral along with a cognitive characteristic of feeding disorders within a given population.

Thesis Statement

This case is an attempt to establish whether it is a relative big problem for males with a general population in the United States having found that 83% of male versus 71% of female eating disorder cases could be categorized as EDNOS. Analysis of “A two-stage epidemiological study of eating disorders and muscle dysmorphia in male university students in Buenos Aires” by Emilio J. Compte, MSc, Ana R. Sepulveda, PhD, Fernando Torrente

Eating disorders have often been excluded from national mental health surveys, but their inclusion is limited to Anorexia nervosa (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN). Binge eating disorder (BED) which comprises the majority male cases thus their exclusion from large scale surveys brings about problems when drawing conclusions.The issue of low base rates which is a tendency for persons with eating and other mental disorders to be over-represented among non-respondents in epidemiological studies. The factors which include lack of insight, denial, shame and secrecy that account for the bias applies to both men and women (Emilio & Fernando, 2015). Their influence however is greater in the study of males; this is due to the perceived stigma that is usually associated with disclosure of mental health problems.

A review on DSM-5 eating disorder that was recently done by Raevuori and colleagues showed that BED is the most prevalent in adult males with estimates of 0.78%, 1.55% and 2.0%. Estimates of BN and AN are lower and more variable between 0.13% and 1.34% for BN and 0.00% and 0.53% for AN. DSM-IV residual category for EDSON has accounted for the majority of male eating disorders with one study showing a lifetime prevalence of 3.38% in adult males (Emilio & Fernando, 2015). Latter studies however identified few eating disorders and so had low statistical power to detect such differences.

In investigating eating disorder epidemiology at the sysmptom or feature level may be particularly important in males. Most eating disorders are trans-diagnostic across the eating disorders thus which results in frequent diagnostic migration and limited use of diagnostic level epidemiological data and also we are still far away from understanding how behavioral, emotional and cognitive sequelae may together cluster to constitute eating disorders in men. A focus on prevalence and correlates of eating disorder features should contribute vital responsibilities in upcoming epidemiological study. Binge eating (BED) appears to be the most common eating disorder behavior in males. This was shown in both studies done in Germany and the United States in 2005 and 2008 respectively (Emilio & Fernando, 2015). The study also touched on weight loss and also a disorder known as muscle dysmorphia. Apparently, the condition falls under a body dysmorphic disorder category but some authorities have argued that it would fall under the classification of eating disorders.


In conclusion the present state of epidemiological study precludes on comprehension of a full burden of eating and other related disorders in males. It is also evident that males also suffer from disturbances in body image, binge eating and maladaptive weight/shape control behaviors. It is suggestible from this assessment that muscle dysmorphia is the male equivalent of AN, thus it is distinct from other forms of body dysmorphic disorders.


Emilio J. Compte, MSc, Ana R. Sepulveda, PhD, Fernando Torrente. (2015). “A two-stage epidemiological study of eating disorders and muscle dysmorphia in male university students in Buenos Aires.” Int. J. Eat. Disord.. doi: 10.1002/eat.22448

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