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Eat Disord. 2007 Jan-Feb;15(1):63-80.

A conceptual model of factors contributing to the development of muscle dysmorphia.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY 42101-1030, USA.


Muscle dysmorphia is a recently described subcategory of Body Dysmorphic Disorder. It is most prevalent in males and has a number of cognitive, behavioral, socioenviornmental, emotional, and psychological factors that influence its expression. An etiological model describing these influences is presented for evaluation. Nine variables (body mass, media influences, ideal body internalization, low self-esteem, body dissatisfaction, health locus of control, negative affect, perfectionism, and body distortion) were identified through the use of extant literature on muscle dysmorphia and through extrapolation from literature involving women and eating disorders. The functional relationships among these variables are described and implications of the model are discussed.

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