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Sociocultural predictors of body shape and weight concerns in Turkiye: Differences between healthy women and patients with eating disorders
1Istanbul University, Istanbul Faculty of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Istanbul, Turkiye
2Istanbul University, Faculty of Letters, Department of Applied Psychology, Istanbul, Turkiye
3University of Colorado Faculty of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, Aurora, CO, USA
Dusunen Adam Journal of Psychiatry and Neurological Sciences 2024; 37(2): 76-84 DOI: 10.14744/DAJPNS.2024.00242
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Objective: Sociocultural factors are believed to play significant roles in predisposing individuals to eating disorders. Accordingly, this study aimed to investigate various sociocultural predictors of body shape and weight concerns among healthy women and those with eating disorders within the Turkish population.
Method: Data from 79 patients (41 diagnosed with anorexia nervosa, 31 with bulimia nervosa, and 7 with binge eating disorder) were analyzed alongside 72 healthy controls matched for age and education. Participants provided demographic information and completed several questionnaires, including the Sociocultural Attitudes Towards Appearance Questionnaire - 4 Revised, the Social Comparison through Physical Appearance Scale and the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire.
Results: Key findings include: 1) Patients exhibited higher scores related to sociocultural factors impacting appearance and engaged in more negative social comparisons than controls; 2) Among both groups, internalization of a thin ideal was a predictor of concerns about shape and weight; 3) In controls, but not in patients, family pressures influenced shape concerns; 4) Parental dieting status influenced weight concerns in both groups. Surprisingly, in controls, paternal dieting was linked to a higher shape and weight concerns, a finding not observed in patients.
Conclusion: These findings indicate that sociocultural influences on body image may affect Turkish women with eating disorders (ED) differently from healthy women. The impact of paternal dieting on shape and weight concerns among control women has not been previously reported. This finding suggests that the influence of paternal dieting on daughters’ shape and weight concerns may be more pronounced in Turkiye than in Western countries.