The Tripartite Influence model of body image and eating disturbance A covariance structure modeling investigation testing the mediational role of appearance comparison

Patricia Van Den Berg, J. Kevin Thompson, Karen Obremski-Brandon, Michael Coovert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

234 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Recent theoretical approaches to the etiology of eating disorders and body image disturbances have begun to focus on multifactorial models. In the current study, the Tripartite Influence model was examined in a large sample of college females (ages 18-22). This model proposes that three primary core sources of influence - parents, peers and media - contribute to the development of body image and eating disturbances. Additionally, the model suggests that at least two factors mediate the relationship between influences and disturbance - appearance comparison and internalization of media information. In this study, appearance comparison was examined as a mediational link between peer, family and media influence variables and the outcome disturbance measures of eating dysfunction and body image dissatisfaction. Covariance structure modeling (CSM) was used to test the proposed pathways. The results indicated that appearance comparison mediated the effects of family and media influences on body dissatisfaction, which in turn influenced restrictive and bulimic behaviors. In addition, peer influences had a direct influence on restriction. Perfectionism was hypothesized to relate to body dissatisfaction, but was in fact found to influence appearance comparison. The findings were limited by the necessity of several modifications to the originally proposed models, yet offer replication and extension of previous work with appearance comparison and support for further testing of the Tripartite Influence model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1007-1020
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Psychosomatic Research
Volume53
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2002
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Body Image
Eating
Parents
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)
Peer Influence

Keywords

  • Appearance comparison
  • Body image
  • Developmental influences
  • Eating disturbance
  • Psychological functioning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

The Tripartite Influence model of body image and eating disturbance A covariance structure modeling investigation testing the mediational role of appearance comparison. / Van Den Berg, Patricia; Thompson, J. Kevin; Obremski-Brandon, Karen; Coovert, Michael.

In: Journal of Psychosomatic Research, Vol. 53, No. 5, 01.11.2002, p. 1007-1020.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Van Den Berg, Patricia ; Thompson, J. Kevin ; Obremski-Brandon, Karen ; Coovert, Michael. / The Tripartite Influence model of body image and eating disturbance A covariance structure modeling investigation testing the mediational role of appearance comparison. In: Journal of Psychosomatic Research. 2002 ; Vol. 53, No. 5. pp. 1007-1020.
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