Childhood risk factors: Longitudinal continuities and eating disorders

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Background: Childhood risk factors for eating disorders have not been fully elucidated yet. Moreover the developmental continuities between childhood and adulthood that contribute to eating disorders have received little attention. Aim: To integrate research and current knowledge on childhood risk factors and precursors for eating disorders. Method: The literature on childhood precursors and risk factors in eating disorders and on continuities between childhood eating problems and eating disorders was reviewed. Results: The literature suggests that feeding difficulties and childhood weight status might be part of a developmental marker for eating disorders. Psychopathology and adversities in childhood also increase the risk for later eating disorders, although they might not be specific factors. Conclusions: Further research is needed to clarify the role of childhood precursors/risk factors and of early eating and weight problems in the development of eating disorders. Declaration of interest: None.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)567-574
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Mental Health
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Development
  • Eating disorders
  • Risk factors


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