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Shape And Weight Concern And Self-esteem As Mediators Of Externalized Self-perception, Dietary Restraint And Uncontrolled Eating

M. Ross, T. Wade
Published 2004 · Psychology

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Objective: This study investigated mediational processes by which variables may work together to increase the likelihood of dietary restraint and uncontrolled eating, guided by the framework suggested by the cognitive model. Method: Female university students aged between 18 and 25 years (N = 111) completed the Silencing the Self Scale, and measures of self-esteem, weight concern, shape concern and dietary restraint, as well as a measure of uncontrolled eating. Results: Self-esteem partially mediated the relationship between externalized self-perception and a combined measure of weight and shape concern, which in turn fully mediated the relationship between self-esteem and both dietary restraint and uncontrolled eating. Dietary restraint did not mediate the relationship between weight and shape concern and uncontrolled eating. Discussion: The results support the validity of the cognitive model of bulimia nervosa and are consistent with externalized self-perception being an early risk factor for disturbed eating patterns, in line with earlier theorizing. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.

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