Quality of life impairment associated with body dissatisfaction in a general population sample of women

Mond, Jonathan, Mitchison, Deborah, Latner, Janet, Hay, Phillipa, Owen, Cathy, and Rodgers, Bryan (2013) Quality of life impairment associated with body dissatisfaction in a general population sample of women. BMC Public Health, 13 (920). pp. 1-11.

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Abstract

Background: In order to elucidate the individual and community health burden of body dissatisfaction (BD), we examined impairment in quality of life associated with BD in a large, general population sample of women.

Methods: Self-report measures of BD, health-related quality of life (SF-12 Physical and Mental Component Summary scales) and subjective quality of life (WHOQOL-BREF Psychological Functioning and Social Relationships subscales) were completed by 5,255 Australian women aged 18 to 42 years.

Results: Most participants (86.9%) reported some level of dissatisfaction with their weight or shape and more than one third (39.4%) reported moderate to marked dissatisfaction. Higher levels of BD were associated with poorer quality of life for all items of both quality of life measures, the degree of impairment being proportional to the degree of BD. Associations were strongest for items tapping mental health and psychosocial functioning, although greater BD was associated with substantially increased risk of impairment in certain aspects of physical health even when controlling for body weight. Post-hoc analysis indicated that the observed associations between BD and quality of life impairment were not accounted for by an association between BD and eating disorder symptoms.

Conclusions: In women, BD is associated with marked impairment in aspects of quality of life relating to mental health and psycho-social functioning and at least some aspects of physical health, independent of its association with body weight and eating disorder symptoms. Greater attention may need to be given to BD as a public health problem. The fact that BD is "normative" should not be taken to infer that it is benign.

Item ID: 32045
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1471-2458
Keywords: body dissatisfaction; prevalence; disability; quality of life impairment; health burden
Additional Information:

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Available from publisher website.

Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2014 06:08
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111717 Primary Health Care @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920507 Womens Health @ 100%
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