University of Oulu

Oura, P., Niinimäki, J., Karppinen, J., & Nurkkala, M. (2019). Eating Behavior Traits, Weight Loss Attempts, and Vertebral Dimensions Among the General Northern Finnish Population. SPINE, 44(21), E1264–E1271.

Eating behavior traits, weight loss attempts, and vertebral dimensions among the general Northern Finnish population

Saved in:
Author: Oura, Petteri1,2,3; Niinimäki, Jaakko1,2,3; Karppinen, Jaro1,3,4;
Organizations: 1Center for Life Course Health Research, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Research Unit of Medical Imaging, Physics and Technology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
3Medical Research Center Oulu, Oulu University Hospital and University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
4Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Finland
5Department of Sports and Exercise Medicine, Oulu Deaconess Institute, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.5 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Wolters Kluwer, 2019
Publish Date: 2020-11-01


Study design: A population-based birth cohort study.

Objective: To evaluate the associations of eating behavior traits and weight loss attempts with vertebral size among the general Northern Finnish population.

Summary of background data: Vertebral fragility fractures are a typical manifestation of osteoporosis, and small vertebral dimensions are a well-established risk factor for vertebral fracturing. Previous studies have associated cognitive eating restraint and diet-induced weight loss with deteriorated bone quality at various skeletal sites, but data on vertebral geometry are lacking.

Methods: This study of 1338 middle-aged Northern Finns evaluated the associations of eating behavior traits (flexible and rigid cognitive restraint of eating, uncontrolled eating, emotional eating; assessed by the Three-Factor Eating Questionnaire-18) and weight loss attempts (assessed by a separate questionnaire item) with magnetic resonance imaging-derived vertebral cross-sectional area (CSA). Sex-stratified linear regression models were used to analyze the data, taking body mass index, leisure-time physical activity, general diet, smoking, and socioeconomic status as potential confounders.

Results: Women with rigid or rigid-and-flexible cognitive eating restraints had 3.2% to 3.4% smaller vertebral CSA than those with no cognitive restraint (P ≤ 0.05). Similarly, the women who reported multiple weight loss attempts in adulthood and midlife had 3.5% smaller vertebral size than those who did not (P = 0.03). Other consistent findings were not obtained from either sex.

Conclusion: Rigid cognitive eating restraint and multiple weight loss attempts predict small vertebral size and thus decreased spinal health among middle-aged women, but not among men. Future longitudinal studies should confirm these findings.

Level of Evidence: 3

see all

Series: Spine
ISSN: 0362-2436
ISSN-E: 1528-1159
ISSN-L: 0362-2436
Volume: 44
Issue: 21
Pages: E1264 - E1271
DOI: 10.1097/BRS.0000000000003123
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 3121 General medicine, internal medicine and other clinical medicine
Copyright information: © Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.