Marital status, marital satisfaction, and body image dissatisfaction

Michael A. Friedman, Amy E. Dixon, Kelly D. Brownell, Mark A. Whisman, Denise E. Wilfley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Objective: This study examined whether married individuals have comparable body image disturbance to nonmarried individuals and whether the quality of a marital relationship is significantly related to body image disturbance in a sample of dieters. Method: Measures of marital status, marital satisfaction, and body dissatisfaction were administered to a sample of 16,377 subjects who had tried to lose weight at least once within the previous 3 years. Results: Marital status was not associated with increased body dissatisfaction. Marital satisfaction was significantly related to body dissatisfaction when controlling for age, body mass index, self-esteem, and gender. Discussion: Body dissatisfaction occurs at comparable levels among married and single individuals and the study of marital functioning among eating-disordered individuals represents a large gap in the literature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-85
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 1999


  • Body image disturbance
  • Dieters
  • Marriage


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