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Adolescents with irritable bowel syndrome report increased eating-associated symptoms, changes in dietary composition, and altered eating behaviors: a pilot comparison study to healthy adolescents


Adolescents with irritable bowel syndrome report increased eating-associated symptoms, changes in dietary composition, and altered eating behaviors: a pilot comparison study to healthy adolescents



Neurogastroenterology and Motility: the Official Journal of the European Gastrointestinal Motility Society 28(12): 1915-1920



ISSN/ISBN: 1350-1925

PMID: 27353222

DOI: 10.1111/nmo.12894

About half of adult irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patients report symptoms with eating and disordered eating habits. However, little is known about eating in adolescent IBS patients, a common age at which eating disorders develop. The aim of the study was to investigate if adolescents with IBS are more likely than healthy controls (HCs) to experience eating-associated symptoms (EAS), report disordered eating patterns, and show differences in diet composition. A total of 99 adolescents between 15 and 21 years-of-age participated (n = 48 IBS; n = 51 HCs). All subjects completed three 24-h dietary recalls and questionnaires on EAS and disordered eating. IBS patients were more likely to report EASs than HC (91.7% vs 28%, p < 0.001). Eating-associated symptoms were controlled by avoiding the offending food (97.7%), not eating any food even when hungry (43.2%), or vomiting after eating (13.6%). Compared to HC, IBS patients reported reduced daily intake of overall calories (1828 vs 2139; p < 0.05), fat (65.4 g vs 81.4 g, p < 0.05), and lactose (8.2 g vs 12.8 g, p < 0.01). No differences were found between IBS and HC in screening for disordered eating patterns or BMI, though IBS patients endorsed using potentially unhealthy eating behaviors in an attempt to control symptoms. Eating-associated symptoms are very common in adolescents with IBS and associated with changes in eating behaviors and dietary composition. They do not appear to change BMI and risk for eating disorders. More research is needed to guide adolescents with IBS in making appropriate dietary changes to control EASs.

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Accession: 057142854

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