GENERAL AND EATING DISORDER SPECIFIC FLEXIBILITY IN ANOREXIA NERVOSA, BULIMIA NERVOSA AND BINGE EATING DISORDER: DEVELOPMENT AND PSYCHOMETRIC PROPERTIES OF THE EATING DISORDER FLEXIBILITY INDEX (EDFLIX) QUESTIONNAIRE
Camilla L Dahlgren , Trine Wiig-Hage, Kristin Stedal
Regional Department of Eating Disorders, Division of Mental Health and Addiction, Oslo University Hospital, Ullevål HF, Oslo, Norway
Introduction.Studies investigating cognitive flexibility in individuals with eating disorders (EDs) are inconsistent, and although neuropsychological tests are commonly used to measure these skills, they may not be particularly effective in predicting every day functioning. The aim of this study was to investigate the psychometric properties of a newly developed questionnaire called the Eating Disorder Flexibility Index (EDFLIX) Questionnaire. Methods.A sample of 207 adult individuals with EDs (AN:55%, BN:29%, BED:16%) responded to a 51-item, pilot questionnaire on ED specific and general flexibility. In addition, the Shift subscale from the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functioning was administered. Results.An exploratory factor analysis yielded a 36-item, 3-factor solution capturing general flexibility (EDFLIX-GF), flexibility related to food and exercise (EDFLIX-FoEx), and flexibility concerning body shape and weight (EDFLIX-ShWe). Results showed good to excellent internal consistency for the EDFLIX scores (Chronbach’s α [range] 0.863-.0913), and significant correlations between EDFLIX total and subscale scores and the BRIEF Shift score. Generally, EDFLIX scores were significantly higher in participants with BN and BED, in younger participants, in participants with higher BMI and in participants with shorter duration of illness. Conclusions.The EDFLIX was found to be a reliable and valid measure of ED specific and general flexibility in individuals with EDs.