Comparing measurement of internalized weight stigma and body dissatisfaction

Dakota L. Leget, Lara J. LaCaille, Rebecca L. Pearl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Respective conceptualizations of internalized weight stigma and body dissatisfaction are distinct; however, strong relationships between measures of these two constructs prompts consideration about if these are truly unique constructs or whether current measurement tools are not adequately capturing their uniqueness. In this cross-sectional study, 480 U.S. women (78.8% white; MBMI = 25.9) ages 18–40 years, recruited from Amazon's MechanicalTurk and a mid-sized university, completed an online survey with the Modified Weight Bias Internalization Scale (WBIS-M), a modified Body Parts Satisfaction Scale (BPSS), and other validated measures of body image, eating behavior, and mental health. Exploratory factor analysis of the WBIS-M and the BPSS supported a two-factor solution, although two items from the WBIS-M loaded with BPSS items. After removing these items, the 9-item version of the WBIS-M demonstrated stronger relationships with dysfunctional eating and mental health symptoms than did the BPSS (ꞵ range = 0.32–0.62 vs. 0.01–0.18, respectively). Findings from this study provide evidence to support the validity of WBIS-M and BPSS measuring unique constructs, suggesting that internalized weight stigma can be differentiated from body dissatisfaction. This study also highlights the need for further research that examines current measurement tools for internalized weight stigma and body dissatisfaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101622
JournalBody Image
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Elsevier Ltd


  • Body dissatisfaction
  • Disordered eating
  • Internalized weight stigma
  • Measurement
  • Mental health
  • Psychometrics

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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