Eating attitudes and family relationships
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A self-administered questionnaire, investigated how eating and drinking differ cross-culturally between Scotland and Spain, and in particular whether Scottish and Spanish family relationships, self-esteem, early patterns and psychosocial factors have an effect on eating attitudes. Self-report questionnaires were distributed to a general population sample consisting of 100 female adults [50 from Barcelona group and 50 from Edinburgh group]. The age ranged between 20-26 years old. The results of the questionnaires were analysed in a cross-sectional exploratory design using independent t-tests, chi-squares and Pearson’s correlations. It was found that Spanish women had better early eating habits that Scottish women but that some of the differences in childhood ceased to exist after 12 years of age. Moreover, Scottish women had higher and more frequent alcohol consumption. No conclusions about the effect of nationality on eating attitudes could be drawn. However, the analyses showed the Eating Attitude Test (EAT) score and external pressure to change eating pattern to be predictors of women’s satisfaction with their family environment. High EAT scores predicted poorer family satisfaction and greater external pressure to change eating pattern also predicted more negative evaluation of family climate. Individuals’ nationality, family cohesion and psychosocial factors were discussed to account for their differences in eating and drinking attitudes across situations and over time.