Early menarche as a precursor to body dissatisfaction and dietary restraint

Hackett, Rhonda G. (1992) Early menarche as a precursor to body dissatisfaction and dietary restraint. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

The main goal of this study was to test the hypothesis that chronological or subjective early menarche results in increased body dissatisfaction and consequently increased dietary restraint. One hundred and ten grade seven and grade eight girls from a local junior high school completed questionnaires during class time to assess dietary restraint and self-esteem. All girls were personally interviewed using a structured interview schedule to determine their puberty status, preparation for menarche, feelings toward menarche, and amount of social support received. Height and weight measures were also obtained. -- Forward stepwise regression analysis revealed that a non-significant amount of body dissatisfaction variance was attributable to actual or perceived early menarche. Body Mass Index accounted for the largest amount of variance, which suggests overweight individuals are more dissatisfied with their body than normal or under weight individuals. Pubertal status was the only other independent variable which accounted for a significant amount of the body dissatisfaction variance. This indicates that body dissatisfaction increases as puberty progresses. Neither body dissatisfaction or early menarche were significant predictors of the level of dietary restraint reported. Time since menarche accounted for the largest amount of the variance, which suggests the onset of menarche is associated with an increase in restraint and the level of restraint continues to increase after menarche has occurred. Body Mass Index was the only other variable which contributed to a significant amount of the restraint variance. This finding replicates that of previous studies which demonstrated overweight individuals were more highly restrained eaters than normal of underweight individuals. Implications of all results are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/5872
Item ID: 5872
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 60-66.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Psychology
Science, Faculty of > Psychology
Date: 1992
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Body image; Menarche--Psychological aspects; Self-perception in adolescence

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