An Evaluation of the Tripartite Influence Model of Body Dissatisfaction and Eating Disturbance with Adolescent Girls

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Body image, Eating disturbance, Risk factors, Adolescence, Internalization, Tripartite Influence Model

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The Tripartite Influence Model of body image and eating disturbance proposes that three formative influences (peer, parents, and media) affect body image and eating problems through two mediational mechanisms: internalization of the thin-ideal and appearance comparison processes. The current study evaluated this model in a sample of 325 sixth through eighth grade girls. Simple path analyses indicated that internalization and comparison fully mediated the relationship between parental influence and body dissatisfaction and partially mediated the relationship between peer influence and body dissatisfaction. Additionally, internalization and comparison partially mediated the relationship between media influence and body dissatisfaction. Six a priori SEM models based on the full Tripartite Influence Model were also evaluated. A resulting model was found to be an adequate fit to the data, supporting the viability of the Tripartite Model as a useful framework for understanding processes that may predispose young women to develop body image disturbances and eating dysfunction.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Body Image, v. 1, issue 3, p. 237-251