Ethnic and Sexual Minority Differences in the Prediction of Disordered Eating and Exercise Behaviors in College Men

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Despite growing evidence of their prevalence, clinical and subclinical disordered eating behaviors among men continue to be understudied phenomena. When compared to females, predictors of male disordered eating vary across ethnic groups, suggesting cultural influences on disordered eating. Moreover, gay and bisexual men experience pronounced levels of body dissatisfaction, sensitivity to societal body image standards, and subsequent disordered eating when compared to straight men and gay women. This study investigated possible differences in prediction of disordered eating among intersections of male ethnicity and sexuality. We approached this question through a transtheoretical lens that integrated intersectionality and minority stress theories. Archival ... continued below

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Pereira, Andrew December 2017.

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  • Pereira, Andrew

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Description

Despite growing evidence of their prevalence, clinical and subclinical disordered eating behaviors among men continue to be understudied phenomena. When compared to females, predictors of male disordered eating vary across ethnic groups, suggesting cultural influences on disordered eating. Moreover, gay and bisexual men experience pronounced levels of body dissatisfaction, sensitivity to societal body image standards, and subsequent disordered eating when compared to straight men and gay women. This study investigated possible differences in prediction of disordered eating among intersections of male ethnicity and sexuality. We approached this question through a transtheoretical lens that integrated intersectionality and minority stress theories. Archival data from a sample of African American, Latino, and White college men were analyzed using hierarchical multiple regression. Predictors of emotional and binge eating behaviors differed across ethnicity, in that body dissatisfaction and media internalization for African American and Latino males exhibit the strongest unique associations with emotional and binge eating behaviors, while the strongest unique predictors of emotional and binge eating behaviors among White males are depressive symptoms and low self-esteem. Moreover, African American sexual identity and depressive symptoms interact, as gay or bisexual men report stronger unique associations between depression symptoms and emotional and binge eating. All predictors (i.e., body dissatisfaction, depression symptoms, low self-esteem, media internalization, and sexual minority identity) were unable to explain sufficient variance in over exercise behaviors in African American men. Results suggest ethnicity and sexual orientation are meaningful to the experience of disordered eating in men, and that underlying mechanisms may exhibit differing associative patterns across ethnic identity. Clinicians working with ethnically and sexually diverse male disordered eating populations may use the results to better inform treatment interventions and conceptualization. These findings also support the value of intersectional quantitative methodology and the limits of relying on single-axis identity as a predictive element.

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  • December 2017

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  • Jan. 27, 2018, 7:36 a.m.

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Pereira, Andrew. Ethnic and Sexual Minority Differences in the Prediction of Disordered Eating and Exercise Behaviors in College Men, thesis, December 2017; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1062798/: accessed April 25, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .