The relationship between acculturative stress and eating disorder symptoms: is it unique from general life stress?

J Behav Med. 2014 Jun;37(3):445-57. doi: 10.1007/s10865-013-9498-5. Epub 2013 Mar 1.

Abstract

The purpose of the current study was to expand upon the literature examining the relationship between acculturative stress and eating disorder symptoms among different ethnic groups. Specifically, acculturative stress was explored as a moderator of the relationship between body dissatisfaction and eating disorder symptoms among ethnic minority women. Additionally, the distinction between acculturative stress and general life stress in predicting eating disorder symptoms was assessed. Participants consisted of 247 undergraduate women, all of whom were members of an ethnic minority group including African Americans, Asian Americans, and Latinas. Acculturative stress was found to moderate the relationship between body dissatisfaction and eating disorder symptoms, but only among African American women. Acculturative stress was also found to significantly predict bulimic symptoms above and beyond general life stress among African American, Asian American, and Latina women.

MeSH terms

  • Acculturation*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • African Americans / ethnology
  • Asian Americans / ethnology
  • Body Image
  • Bulimia / ethnology
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / ethnology*
  • Female
  • Hispanic Americans / ethnology
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events*
  • Minority Groups / psychology*
  • Minority Groups / statistics & numerical data
  • Stress, Psychological / ethnology*
  • United States / ethnology
  • Young Adult