THE RELATIONSHIP OF BODY IMAGE TO BODY MASS INDEX AND BINGE EATING: THE ROLE OF CROSS-SITUATIONAL BODY IMAGE DISSATISFACTION VERSUS SITUATIONAL REACTIVITY1, 2

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Although body image is often conceptualized as a trait, there is growing recognition of situational influences. It was hypothesized that college women whose body image was more reactive to situational influences would be more likely to experience adverse weight-related outcomes, including obesity and binge eating behavior. In a pilot study, vignettes were rated to yield a range of situational body image ratings, and the three vignettes that captured the full range (lowest, median, and highest ratings) were used in the main study. In the main study, 138 female undergraduates (M = 19.5 yr., SD = 1.9; 74.6% “White or Caucasian”) completed a survey that included the Questionnaire on Eating and Weight Patterns-Revised. They also provided Body Image State Scale ratings in response to three vignettes drawn from the pilot study. Body image “reactivity” was defined as the range over which body image scores varied for a given participant (standard deviation of the means). Contrary to predictions, overall body dissatisfaction across situations—but not situational reactivity—was related to higher BMI, greater likelihood of binge eating, and higher depression. Results suggest when body image dissatisfaction is relatively impervious to situational influences, it may be a risk factor for disordered eating behavior, whereas body image dissatisfaction that is responsive to situational influences appears to be less pathognomonic.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles