The impact of the amount of social evaluation on psychobiological responses to a body image threat
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The present study examined the impact of amount of social-evaluative body image threat on psychobiological responses. Women (N=123) were randomized into an individual-threat, group-threat or no-threat condition. Participants completed a measure of state body shame and provided a sample of saliva (to assess cortisol) at baseline and following their condition. Both threat conditions had higher baseline-adjusted body shame following the threat compared to the no-threat condition; however, no difference on baseline-adjusted body shame between the threat conditions was found. The same pattern of results was found for cortisol - both threat conditions had higher baseline-adjusted response cortisol than the no-threat condition, with no significant differences between the threat groups. Findings suggest that the magnitude of psychobiological responses to a social-evaluative body image threat does not differ with the amount of social-evaluative threat (individual- versus group-threat). These findings provide insight into the context of body image threats of women.
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