The present study investigated relationships between media influence (exposure, self-comparison to media ideals and internalization of media messages, societal pressure to have the perfect body, using media as a source of information about how to achieve a certain body ideal) and drive for thinness and drive for muscularity in 311 male and female undergraduates at a university in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. We hypothesized that drive for thinness and drive for muscularity in both women and men would relate to body comparison/internalization, societal pressure, use of media for information, magazine consumption and television viewing. We also expected television and magazines would have different influences on men and women’s drive for muscularity and drive for thinness. Finally, we hypothesized that societal pressure and using media as a source of information would mediate the relation between media exposure (number of magazines read, hours of television watched) and drive for thinness and drive for muscularity in women and men. Students completed surveys on-line. Results revealed using media as a source of information on how to attain the ideal body mediates the relationship between drive for thinness and media exposure in women. Overall, it seems that media and the internalization of general/non-athletic body ideals may have an impact on drive for thinness in both men and women. Similarly, internalization of athletic body ideals may relate to drive for muscularity in both collegiate men and women in the U.S. Implications for counselors were discussed.
This is an author-produced, peer-reviewed version of this article. The final publication is available at www.springerlink.com. Copyright restrictions may apply. doi: 10.1007/s11199-014-0397-1
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/mary_pritchard/61/