The role of sociocultural influences on symptoms of muscle dysmorphia and eating disorders in men, and the mediating effects of perfectionism

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Abstract

This study examined the mediating role of self-oriented and socially prescribed perfectionism in the relationship between sociocultural influences (i.e., media, peer, and teasing) and symptoms of muscle dysmorphia (MD) and eating disorders (ED). A nonclinical sample of males (N = 158, Mage = 26.94, SD = 5.50) completed measures of perfectionism, MD, body dissatisfaction, drive for thinness, and bulimia. Susceptibility to appearance-based messages from the media, their peers, and family was also measured. Analyses confirmed the partial mediating role of self-oriented perfectionism only for drive for thinness. In contrast, socially prescribed perfectionism was found to be a partial mediator between all three sociocultural variables and measures of both MD and ED; except for those between peer influence and body dissatisfaction, and teasing and bulimia symptomatology. These two relationships were fully mediated by socially prescribed perfectionism. Results suggest that vulnerability to MD and ED depend on pre-existing perfectionistic attitudes, particularly that of socially prescribed perfectionism.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-182
Number of pages9
JournalBehavioral Medicine
Volume42
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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