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Appl Psychol Health Well Being. 2019 Nov 12. doi: 10.1111/aphw.12187. [Epub ahead of print]

Motivated, Fit, and Strong-Using Counter-Stereotypical Images to Reduce Weight Stigma Internalisation in Women with Obesity.

Author information

1
University of Alberta, Alberta, Canada.
2
Obesity Canada, Edmonton, Canada.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

This study aimed to use implicit retraining to change automatic associations between body size and physical activity (PA) in women with obesity to reduce weight bias internalisation (WBI).

METHODS:

A Solomon-square experimental design was used to determine the effect of a four-week online implicit retraining intervention on WBI (primary measure) and PA attitudes, self-efficacy, and self-reported behaviour (secondary measures). The intervention was a visual probe task pairing counter-stereotypical images of active individuals with obesity with positive PA-related words. In qualitative telephone interviews, a sub-sample of participants provided feedback and recommendations for using counter-stereotypical images in PA promotion.

RESULTS:

Women completed the intervention (n = 48) or a control task (n = 55). Results of a RM-ANOVA showed no interaction or main effect of group on WBI. A main effect of time demonstrated that both groups had reduced WBI between pre-test and post-test, through to one-week follow-up. There were no differences between groups or over time for PA attitudes, self-efficacy, or behaviour. Women who completed interviews (n = 16) discussed several benefits and drawbacks of using counter-stereotypical images.

CONCLUSION:

Implicit retraining did not reduce WBI but qualitative findings support the use of counter-stereotypical PA images.

KEYWORDS:

implicit retraining; non-stigmatising images; obesity; physical activity; weight stigma reduction

PMID:
31714033
DOI:
10.1111/aphw.12187

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