Fear of Negative Appearance Evaluation: Development and Evaluation of a New Construct for Risk Factor Work in the Field of Eating Disorders

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Appearance evaluation, Assessment, Risk factors, Eating disorders

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The psychometric properties and correlates of a measure designed to assess fear of negative appearance evaluation are presented. In Study 1, 165 college females completed the Fear of Negative Appearance Evaluation Scale [FNAES; Thomas, C.M., Keery, H., Williams, R., & Thompson, J. K. (1998, November). The Fear of Negative Appearance Evaluation Scale: Development and preliminary validation. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for the Advancement of Behavior Therapy, Washington, DC] along with measures of body image, eating disturbance, and depression. Results replicated previous analyses indicating the presence of a single factor, good internal consistency, and significant association with measures of body image and eating disturbance. Additionally, the FNAES accounted for unique variance beyond that explained by general fear of negative evaluation, and other measures of body image and eating disturbance, in the prediction of body shape dysphoria, dietary restraint, and trait anxiety. Study 2 further examined the validity of the FNAES, finding it to correlate significantly with measures of social physique anxiety, body image, eating attitude, and mood. The FNAES did not significantly correlate with body mass index (BMI). Regression analyses found the FNAES to predict levels of body image, eating attitude, and mood beyond variance explained by social physique anxiety. The FNAES appears to measure a conceptually unique aspect of body image that has not been indexed by previous measures and may serve a useful role in risk factor and preventive work.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Eating Behaviors, v. 5, issue 1, p. 75-84