Culture and weight consciousness

J Psychosom Res. 1988;32(6):573-7. doi: 10.1016/0022-3999(88)90005-0.


The relationship between eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia and sociocultural factors is examined. The syndromes were first described in Western cultures and were reported as particularly rare or absent in other cultures. Epidemiological research shows that the frequency of their presentation has increased over the past two decades, probably as a consequence of changes in cultural norms related to the concepts of feminine beauty with increased emphasis on thinness. Recent research shows that adoption of these cultural values by other societies is associated with the emergence of similar syndromes in their cultures.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Asia
  • Body Image
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison
  • Culture*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • United States