Validation of the Emotional Eating Scale among Chinese undergraduates

Hong Zhu1, Taisheng Cai1, Gui Chen1, Bin Zhang2
1Medical Psychological Institute of The Second Xiangya Hospital, Hunan Province Technology Institute of Psychiatry, Key Laboratory of Psychiatry and Mental Health of Hunan Province, Central South University, People’s Republic of China
2Department of Applied Psychology, Hunan University of Chinese Medicine, People’s Republic of China
Cite this article:  Zhu, H., Cai, T., Chen, G., & Zhang, B. (2013). Validation of the Emotional Eating Scale among Chinese undergraduates. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 41(1), 123-134.

Volume 41 Issue 1 | e2662 | Published: February 2013 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2013.41.1.123

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We examined emotional eating among undergraduates in China. The Emotional Eating Scale (EES; Arnow, Kenardy, & Agras, 1995) was translated into Chinese and adapted to assess intensity and frequency of eating in response to different emotions. A factor analysis generated 4 subscales of emotions for which eating is a response: anxiety, depression, anger/hostility, and positive emotion. Internal consistency reliability for the subscales was established (Cronbach’s alpha = .817, .852, .832, and .861, respectively). Moderate correlations were found between all subscales, eating pathology, and impulsive control. Positive emotion and negative emotion were found to play an important role in eating behavior. As there was a strong relationship between emotional eaters, especially negative emotional eaters, and eating psychopathology, these individuals may be at high risk of developing an eating disorder and/or becoming obese.

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