Examining a Multidimensional Model of Eating Disorder Symptomatology Among College Women

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Despite many theorists' assertions and researchers' findings that eating disturbances have personal, sociocultural, and relational correlates, no model of eating disorder symptomatology incorporating all 3 of these domains has been proposed. The purpose of this study, then, was to examine empirically such a model. Personal, sociocultural, and relational variables were chosen, based on their solid relations with eating disorder symptomatology, to be included within the model. Theoretical frameworks and empirical findings were used to specify variable relations and paths, and the model was tested via structural equation modeling with data from 463 college women. As expected, the model fit the data adequately, and sociocultural, personal, and relational variables all made unique contributions within the model. Most model predictions were supported, and personal and relational variables were found to fully mediate the effects of the sociocultural variable on disordered eating scores.

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