Body dissatisfaction prospectively predicts depressive mood and low self-esteem in adolescent girls and boys

Susan J. Paxton, Dianne Neumark-Sztainer, Peter J. Hannan, Maria E. Eisenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

399 Scopus citations

Abstract

This research examined whether body dissatisfaction prospectively predicted depressive mood and low self-esteem in adolescent girls and boys 5 years later. Participants were early-adolescent girls (n = 440, Time 1 M age = 12.7 years) and boys (n = 366, Time 1 M age = 12.8 years) and midadolescent girls (n = 946, Time 1 M age = 15.8 years) and boys (n = 764, Time 1 M age = 15.9 years). After controlling for Time 1 of the relevant dependent variable, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and body mass index, Time 1 body dissatisfaction was a unique predictor of Time 2 depressive mood and low self-esteem in early-adolescent girls (depressive mood: F = 4.80, p <.05; self-esteem: F = 9.64, p <.01) and midadolescent boys (depressive mood: F = 12.27, p <.001; self-esteem: F = 9.38, p <.01) but not in early-adolescent boys or midadolescent girls. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that body dissatisfaction is a risk factor for depressive mood and low self-esteem in both girls and boys but in different phases of adolescence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)539-549
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Volume35
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2006

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