The perception of your body by homosexual people. Eating disorders

Kosma Kołodziej, Katarzyna Urtnowska-Joppek, Karolina Suwała


Problems related to eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia and obesity turns out to be very common in the LGBT group. The paper presents a review of research in this field showing the relationship between the influence of the environment, homophobia and lack of tolerance to the problem presented in the topic and a scale of this problem occurring in the presented minority group.
The aim of the work is to draw attention to the scale of the problem and the specificity of the LGBT group in the field of eating disorders. Presenting factors which are a predisposition
to such disorders, may be useful to medical staff, psychologists, educators and therapists dealing with the problem of eating disorders. Another aim is to create a scientific publication on the topic of sexual minorities, which is still lacking in comparison with foreign magazines in our country.
Brief description of the state of knowledge
LGBT group turns out to be a group with an increased risk of eating disorders. Gays are a group exposed to anorexia and bulimia. However, the group of lesbians has been defined with
an increased risk of overweight and obesity. According to a review of contemporary research in this area, the problems related to nutrition are influenced by homophobia, lack of social acceptance, heterosexual and episodes of sexual abuse in childhood.
There is a huge need of knowledge for specialists dealing with eating disorders about the specificity of the LGBT group. Their greater competences can positively influence the prevalence of eating disorders in this group and positively influence the course of treatment
of such people.


eating disorders; bulimia; homosexuality; gay; lesbian

Full Text:



Hoek H.W., Incidence, prevalence and mortality of anorexia nervosa and other eating disorders. Curr Opin Psychiatry., 2006 Jul;19(4):389-94.

Wojtyła A., Biliński P., Bojar I., Wojtyła C., Eating disorders among Polish adolescents attending junior high schools., Probl Hig Epidemiol 2011, 92 (2):343-350.

Carson R.C., James N.B., Mineka S., Psychologia zaburzeń, GWP, Gdańsk 2005, str.443.

Fergusson D.M., Horwood L.J., Beautrais A.L., Is sexual orientation related to mental health problems and suicidality in young people?, Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1999 Oct;56(10):876-80.

Herrell R., Goldberg J., True W.R. I wsp. Sexual orientation and suicidality: a co-twin control study in adult men. Arch. Gen. Psychiatry ,1999; 56: 867–874.

Garofalo R., Katz E., Health care issues of gay and lesbian youth., Curr Opin Pediatr. , 2001 Aug;13(4):298-302.

Carlat D.J., Camargo C.A., Herzog D.B., Eating disorders in males: a report on 135 patients., Am J Psychiatry. 1997 Aug;154(8):1127-32.

Koff E., Lucas M., Migliorini R., Grossmith S., Women and body dissatisfaction: Does sexual orientation make a difference?, Body Image. 2010 Jun;7(3):255-8.

McGrady P.B., "Grow the Beard, Wear the Costume": Resisting Weight and Sexual Orientation Stigmas in the Bear Subculture., J Homosex. 2016 Feb 8.

Peplau L.A., Frederick D.A., Yee C., Maisel N., Lever J., Ghavami N., Body image satisfaction in heterosexual, gay, and lesbian adults., Arch Sex Behav. 2009 Oct;38(5):713-25.

Fussner L.M., Smith A.R. It's Not Me, It's You: Perceptions of Partner Body Image Preferences Associated With Eating Disorder Symptoms in Gay and Heterosexual Men. J Homosex. 2015;62(10):1329-44.

Matthews-Ewald M.R., Zullig K.J., Ward R.M.. Sexual orientation and disordered eating behaviors among self-identified male and female college students. Eat Behav. 2014 Aug;15(3):441-4.

Heffernan K.,Sexual orientation as a factor in risk for binge eating and bulimia nervosa: a review. Int J Eat Disord. 1994 Dec;16(4):335-47.

Smith H.A., Markovic N., Danielson M.E., Matthews A., Youk A., Talbott E.O., Larkby C., Hughes T.,Sexual abuse, sexual orientation, and obesity in women.,

J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2010 Aug;19(8):1525-32.

Struble C.B., Lindley L.L., Montgomery K., Hardin J., Burcin M., Overweight and obesity in lesbian and bisexual college women., J Am Coll Health. 2010;59(1):51-6.

Dakanalis A., Di Mattei V.E., Bagliacca E.P., Prunas A., Sarno L., Riva G., Zanetti M.A.,Disordered eating behaviors among Italian men: objectifying media and sexual orientation differences. Eat Disord. 2012;20(5):356-67

Kaminski P.L., Chapman B.P., Haynes S.D., Own L., Body image, eating behaviors, and attitudes toward exercise among gay and straight men., Eat Behav. 2005 Jun;6(3):179-87.

Yelland C., Tiggemann M. Muscularity and the gay ideal: body dissatisfaction and disordered eating  in homosexual men., Eat Behav. 2003 Aug;4(2):107-16.

Feldman M. B., Meyer I. H., Eating Disorders in Diverse Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Populations Int J Eat Disord. 2007 Apr; 40(3): 218–226.

Feldman M.B., Meyer IH., Comorbidity and age of onset of eating disorders in gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals. Psychiatry Res. 2010 Dec 30;180(2-3):126-31.

Wiseman M.C., Moradi B., Body image and eating disorder symptoms in sexual minority men: A test and extension of objectification theory., J Couns Psychol. 2010 Apr;57(2):154-66

Feldman M.B., Meyer I.H. Childhood abuse and eating disorders in gay and bisexual men. Int J Eat Disord. 2007 Jul;40(5):418-23.

Brown T.A., Keel P.K., Relationship status predicts lower restrictive eating pathology for bisexual and gay men across 10-year follow-up. Int J Eat Disord. 2015 Sep;48(6):700-7.

Cella S., Iannaccone M., Ascione R., Cotrufo P., Body dissatisfaction, abnormal eating behaviours and eating disorder attitude in homo- and heterosexuals., Eat Weight Disord. 2010 Sep;15(3):180-5.

Austin SB., Ziyadeh N., Kahn J.A., Camargo C.A., Colditz G.A., Field A.E., Sexual orientation, weight concerns, and eating-disordered behaviors in adolescent girls and boys. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2004 Sep;43(9):1115-23.

Williamson I., Hartley P. British research into the increased vulnerability of young gay men to eating disturbance and body dissatisfaction., European Eating Disorders Review Sep.1998.6(3):160 – 170.

Mereish E.H., Poteat V.P., Let's Get Physical: Sexual Orientation Disparities in Physical Activity, Sports Involvement, and Obesity Among a Population-Based Sample of Adolescents. Am J Public Health. 2015 Sep;105(9):1842-8

Brennan D.J., Asakura K., George C., Newman P.A., Giwa S., Hart T.A., Souleymanov R., Betancourt G.,"Never reflected anywhere": body image among ethnoracialized gay and bisexual men., Body Image. 2013 Jun;10(3):389-98.

Mason T.B., Lewis R.J., Minority stress and binge eating among lesbian and bisexual women. J Homosex. 2015;62(7):971-92.

Bartlett N.H., Patterson H.M., VanderLaan D.P., Vasey P.L. The relation between women's body esteem and friendships with gay men., Body Image. 2009 Jun;6(3):235-41.

Owens L.K., Hughes T.L., Owens-Nicholson D. The effects of sexual orientation on body image and attitudes about eating and weight. J Lesbian Stud. 2003;7(1):15-33.

J. Traies, Old lesbians in the UK: community and friendship., J Lesbian Stud., 2015;19(1):35-49.

Fogel S., Young L., McPherson J.B., The experience of group weight loss efforts among lesbians., Women Health. 2009 Sep;49(6):540-54.

French S.A., Story M., Remafedi G., Resnick M.D., Blum R.W., Sexual orientation and prevalence of body dissatisfaction and eating disordered behaviors: a population-based study of adolescents. Int J Eat Disord. 1996 Mar; 19 (2): 119-26



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2018 © The Author(s)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Journal of Education, Health and Sport formerly Journal of Health Sciences

Declaration on the original version.

Editors indicates that the main version of the magazine is to issue a "electronic".

The journal has had 5 points in Ministry of Science and Higher Education parametric evaluation. § 8. 2) and § 12. 1. 2) 22.02.2019.

1223 Journal of Education, Health and Sport eISSN 2391-8306 7

ISSN 2391-8306 formerly ISSN: 1429-9623 / 2300-665X

Archives 2011 - 2014

PBN 2011 - 2014

POL-index 2011 - 2014

BASE 2011 - 2014

Indexed in Bases, Bazy indeksacyjne: ERIH Plus, Worldcat, PBN/POL-Index, ICI Journals Master List, Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), ZBD, Ulrich's periodicals, Google Scholar, Polska Bibliografia Lekarska

US NLM = 101679844

101679844 - NLM Catalog Result - NCBI

Find a library that holds this journal:

Journal Language(s): English 

PBN Poland



Redaction, Publisher and Editorial Office

Instytut Kultury Fizycznej Uniwersytet Kazimierza Wielkiego w Bydgoszczy, Institute of Physical Education Kazimierz Wielki University in Bydgoszcz, Poland 85-091 Bydgoszcz ul. Sportowa 2 Copyright by Instytut Kultury Fizycznej UKW w Bydgoszczy  Open Access ISSN 2391-8306 formerly ISSN: 1429-9623 / 2300-665X

The journal has been approved for inclusion in ERIH PLUS.

The ERIH PLUS listing of the journal is available at

SIC Science citation index (calculated on the basis of TCI and Page Rank) 0

Russian Impact factor 0.16

Indexed in Index Copernicus Journals Master List.,p24782242,3.html

ICV 2018 = 95.95 ICV 2017 = 91.30 ICV 2016 = 84.69 ICV 2015 = 93.34 ICV 2014 = 89.51 Standardized Value: 8.27 ICV 2013: 7.32 ICV 2012: 6.41 ICV 20115.48

The InfoBase Index IBI Factor for the year 2015 is 3.56 in InfoBase


Universal Impact Factor 1.78 for year 2012. (

Indexed in Polish Scholarly Bibliography (PBN) (PBN Polska Bibliografia Naukowa) (

is a portal of the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education, collecting information on publications of Polish scientists and on Polish and foreign scholarly journals. Polish Scholarly Bibliograhpy is a part of POL-on - System of Information on Higher Education. It is operated by the Interdisciplinary Centre for Mathematical and Computational Modelling, University of Warsaw.

Indexed in Russian Sciences Index Российский индекс научного цитирования (РИНЦ)

Indexed in Arianta Polish scientific and professional electronic journals Aneta Drabek i Arkadiusz Pulikowski