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Body Image. 2009 Mar;6(2):121-8. doi: 10.1016/j.bodyim.2008.11.003. Epub 2009 Feb 4.

Sociocultural influences on body dissatisfaction and body change behaviors among Malaysian adolescents.

Author information

1
School of Psychology, Deakin University, Burwood Highway, Burwood, Victoria 3125, Australia. mellor@deakin.edu.au

Abstract

Little research on body dissatisfaction and body change behaviors, and the sociocultural influences on them, has been undertaken in non-Western contexts. The current study investigated these variables and the relationships between them among a sample of 529 Malaysian high school students (103 Malays, 344 Chinese and 82 Indians), who completed a set of measures in classroom settings. Chinese girls were more dissatisfied with their bodies than Chinese boys, but no gender difference was found for Malay and Indian participants. Girls were more likely to engage in behaviors to lose weight, and boys were more likely to engage in behaviors to increase muscle. The influence of sociocultural factors on body dissatisfaction and body change behaviors was limited and varied across both sex and ethnicity. Findings are discussed in relation to Western research, and it is concluded that cultural nuances need to be considered when investigating these phenomena.

PMID:
19195942
DOI:
10.1016/j.bodyim.2008.11.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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