Article Text

Download PDFPDF

234 The prevalence of disordered eating and menstrual dysfunction among female university athletes in Sri Lanka
  1. Sajinika Ariyarathne,
  2. Shalika Harshani Perera,
  3. Sameera Perera
  1. Department of Sport Sciences and Physical Education, Faculty of Applied Sciences, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, Belihuloya, Sri Lanka


Background Most university female athletes are suffering from various diseases, injuries and some physical problems than male university athletes in Sri Lanka.

Objective To determine the prevalence of disordered eating (DE) and menstrual dysfunction (MD) among female university athletes in Sri Lanka.

Design Sri Lankan university female athletes (n=308) age between 21–26 years. Data were collected by Eating Attitude Test 26 and behaviour and menstrual history questionnaire.

Setting Sri Lankan university female athletes from 12 different sports.

Participants Female university athletes (n 308) who represented respective universities’ sports teams at Sri Lanka University Games 2019.

Assessment of Risk Factors Duration of administration was June to August of 2020 in Sri Lanka. Eating disorder (ED) was identified as the independent variables of the study.

Main Outcome Measurements MD, BMI (Body Mass Index), and Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) were considered as the dependent variables.

Results Of the 308 participants, 24.0% reported having irregular cycles. Oligomenorrhea was the most frequently reported problem (15.3%), and polymenorrhagia was much less prevalent (3.2%). Hypomenorrhea recorded 8% and 6.6% of having Menorrhagia. Athletes of 68% recorded about PMS. ED was reported by 19.8% of the athletes and 7.7% are classified as at risk of ‘Bulimia Nervosa’. There was no association between ED and MD. Netball players (28%) reported the highest to have ED. Taekwondo and Karate players are having an average of ED 27.7%, 25% respectively.

Conclusions According to the results of this study, many female athletes have ED and menstrual cycle-related problems. Age 21–26 is the important age for females. It is recommended to consider to have balanced nutrition and maintain mental wellness.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.