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23 February 2012 | PR 12/37

New hub to address eating disorders in sport



A hub of research and clinical expertise to help tackle eating disorders in sport and educate athletes and sports professionals in this sensitive issue has been established between Loughborough University and Leicester NHS Eating Disorders Service.

The eating disorders in sport team draw upon the latest research and expertise from the University’s internationally-renowned Centre for Research into Eating Disorders (LUCRED), part of the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences (SSEHS).
Research has shown that up to 20% of athletes suffer from disordered eating behaviours, which can ultimately lead to clinical eating disorders anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.

High levels of perfectionism, competitive thinness, revealing attire and pressures of sport are amongst a variety of factors that make athletes more susceptible to eating disorders. Both male and female athletes across all sports are affected, though some disciplines are more at risk. 
The new hub will provide specialist workshops and training for athletes and sports professionals such as coaches, physiotherapists, medics and lifestyle advisors, in order to raise awareness of the issues, and also to help maximise the prevention of eating problems in sport.

Coordinator Dr Huw Goodwin explains:

“The importance of lifestyle education and support for athletes is widely recognised, but research has shown nutrition-only education is not sufficient to reduce disordered eating behaviours and thoughts among athletes.

“Elite athletes typically share many personality traits with anorexia nervosa sufferers, and combined with the additional pressures and environments within sport they are particularly at risk of developing disordered eating behaviours.
“Our team of leading experts are uniquely placed to provide advice and education in this area.

“By working closely with athletes and sports professionals across a wide range of sports we hope to minimise dangerous eating practices and the occurrence of eating disorders within sport.” 

For further information about the eating disorders in sport team visit: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/research/nceds/


For all media enquiries contact:

Judy Wing
Senior PR Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 228697
E: J.L.Wing@lboro.ac.uk 

Notes for editors:

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year 2008-09 title, and is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in national newspaper league tables. In the 2011 National Student Survey, Loughborough was voted one of the top universities in the UK, and has topped the Times Higher Education league for the UK’s Best Student Experience every year since the poll's inception in 2006. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

It is a member of the 1994 Group of 19 leading research-intensive universities. The Group was established in 1994 to promote excellence in university research and teaching. Each member undertakes diverse and high-quality research, while ensuring excellent levels of teaching and student experience.

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This page was last updated on Friday February 24, 2012 9:08