Abstract

We examined how gender, body mass, race, age, and sexual orientation were linked to appearance evaluation, overweight preoccupation, and body image-related quality of life among 11,620 adults recruited via Mechanical Turk. Men were less likely than women to report low appearance evaluation, high overweight preoccupation, negative effects of body image on their quality of life, being on a weight-loss diet, and trying to lose weight with crash diets/fasting. Racial differences were generally small, but greater appearance evaluation was reported by Black men versus other groups and Black women versus White women. Across all measures, gay and bisexual men reported poorer body image than heterosexual men, with only small effect sizes observed for sexual orientation differences among women. Body mass, but not age, was strongly associated with body image. The prevalence of poor body image highlights the need for interventions. On the positive side, half of men and women reported high appearance evaluation. Examination of this group could identify factors promoting positive body image.

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