Variability in body shape perception in anorexic, bulimic, obese, and control subjects

John K. Collins*, Peter J V Beumont, Stephen W. Touyz, Jeanette Krass, Patricia Thompson, Tessa Philips

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    49 Citations (Scopus)


    Differences in the variability of the judgements of body shape were studied in anorexic, bulimic, obese, and control subjects. The judgements of control subjects were found to be more accurate and less variable than those of the clinical groups, and the distribution of their scores was leptokurtic and almost symmetrical compared with the clinical groups' distributions of scores which were platykurtic and positively skewed. More clinical subjects than controls both underestimated or overestimated their body sizes by 15% or more. Significantly more variability was found among the scores of bulimics than anorexics and among the scores of the obese than the anorexics, but not between the obese and the bulimics, who showed the greatest variability of all. The results are discussed in terms of their consistency with other research findings and their significance for treatment.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)633-638
    Number of pages6
    JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 1987


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