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One hundred and twenty-one female students participated in a two-part experiment that was designed to investigate the impact of external, weight-related feedback on the body image of females with different levels of depressive feelings. As predicted, female participants with greater feelings of depression who were given weight feedback that was too high produced body image estimates that were proportionally larger and significantly different from their depressed counterparts who were given weight feedback that was too low. In contrast, the body size estimations of the participants with low feelings of depression were not affected by the weight-related feedback. These findings indicate that females with feelings of depression may have a body image that is vulnerable to external feedback (e.g., societal messages), which may have implications about the treatment and prevention of body image disturbances. 1991.
Journal of Research in Personality
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