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Eat Behav. 2015 Apr;17:23-6. doi: 10.1016/j.eatbeh.2014.12.009. Epub 2014 Dec 10.

Self-compassion as a moderator of thinness-related pressures' associations with thin-ideal internalization and disordered eating.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University, 225 Psychology Building, Columbus, OH 43210, USA. Electronic address: tylka.2@osu.edu.
2
Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University at Marion, 1465 Mt. Vernon Avenue, Marion, OH 43302, USA. Electronic address: russell.790@buckeyemail.osu.edu.
3
Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University at Marion, 1465 Mt. Vernon Avenue, Marion, OH 43302, USA. Electronic address: neal.323@buckeyemail.osu.edu.

Abstract

During situations that threaten personal adequacy, people high in self-compassion are kind and caring toward themselves, mindful of their distress, and recognize that being imperfect is part of the human experience. Therefore, self-compassion may offset certain disorders (e.g., eating disorders) associated with environmental threats (e.g., thinness-related pressures). In this cross-sectional study, we explored self-compassion's associations with threats involving thinness-related pressures (from friends, family, partners, and media), thin-ideal internalization, and disordered eating among an online sample of 435 U.S. community women. Findings indicated that self-compassion buffered the links from media thinness-related pressure to disordered eating and thin-ideal internalization. Furthermore, higher self-compassion was directly associated with fewer perceived thinness-related pressures, lower thin-ideal internalization, and lower disordered eating. Collectively, these findings add to the growing conceptualization of self-compassion as beneficial to eating behavior and help justify pursuing rigorous longitudinal and clinical examinations of self-compassion as a protective factor of disordered eating.

KEYWORDS:

Community women; Disordered eating; Pressures to be thin; Self-compassion; Thin-ideal internalization

PMID:
25536526
DOI:
10.1016/j.eatbeh.2014.12.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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