Title: Explaining rigid dieting in normal-weight women: The key role of body image inflexibility
Authors: Ferreira, C. 
Trindade, Inês A. 
Martinho, A. 
Keywords: inflexible dieting;;weight dissatisfaction;;body dissatisfaction;;social comparisons based on physical appearance;;body image inflexibility.
Issue Date: 2016
Abstract: Restrictive dieting is an increasing behavior presented by women in Western societies, independently of their weight. There are several known factors that motivate diet, namely a sense of dissatisfaction with one’s body and unfavorable social comparisons based on physical appearance. However, dieting seems to have a paradoxical effect and has been considered a risk factor for weight gain and obesity in women, and associated with maladaptive eating. Nevertheless, the study of the emotional regulation processes that explain the adoption of inflexible and rigid dietary patterns still remains little explored. In this line, the present study aims to explore why normal-weight women engage in highly rigid and inflexible diets. We hypothesize that body and weight dissatisfaction, and unfavorable social comparisons based on physical appearance with peers explain the adoption of inflexible eating rules, through the mechanism of body image inflexibility. The study comprised 508 female college students who presented BMIs between 18.5 and 25. Path analyses were conducted to explore the study’s hypotheses. Results revealed that the model explained 43% of inflexible eating and revealed excellent fit indices. Furthermore, the unwillingness to experience unwanted events related to body image (body image inflexibility) mediated the impact of body dissatisfaction and unfavorable social comparisons on the engagement in inflexible eating rules. This study highlights the relevance of body image inflexibility to explain rigid eating attitudes, and it seems to be an important avenue for the development of interventions focusing on the promotion of adaptive attitudes towards body image and eating in young women.
Description: Ferreira, C., Trindade, I.A., & Martinho, A. (2016). Explaining rigid dieting in normal-weight women: the key role of body image inflexibility. Eating and Weight Disorders - Studies on Anorexia, Bulimia and Obesity, 21(1), 49–56. doi: 10.1007/s40519-015-0188-x.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10316/46819
DOI: doi: 10.1007/s40519-015-0188-x
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:I&D CINEICC - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais

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