This study examined factors that influence body image and strategies to either lose weight or increase muscle among children. Participants were 237 boys and 270 girls. Body mass index (BMI), body dissatisfaction, cognitions and behaviors to both lose weight and increase muscles, as well as self-esteem and positive and negative affect, were evaluated. Self-esteem was associated with body satisfaction, positive affect predicted strategies to lose weight and increase muscles, and negative affect predicted body dissatisfaction and cognitions to lose weight and increase muscles. Boys were more likely to focus on changing muscles. Respondents with higher BMIs were more focused on losing weight but not muscle. The discussion focuses on health risk behaviors related to eating and exercise among children.
Field of Research
170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology
Socio Economic Objective
970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences