Motivation and Emotion

, Volume 35, Issue 4, pp 413–422 | Cite as

When feeling attractive matters too much to women: A process underpinning the relation between psychological need satisfaction and unhealthy weight control behaviors

  • Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani
  • Nikos Ntoumanis
  • Jennifer Cumming
  • Nikos L. D. Chatzisarantis
Original Paper


This study examined a process model linking psychological need satisfaction to unhealthy weight control behaviors. Female University students (N = 220; M age = 20.47; SD = 5.07) completed questionnaires measuring need satisfaction, appearance-contingent self-worth, weight-related appearance anxiety and unhealthy weight control behaviors. Structural equation modeling revealed that need satisfaction indirectly related to engagement in unhealthy weight control behaviors through appearance-contingent self-worth and weight-related appearance anxiety. The results indicate that appearance-contingent self-worth might help to explain how low levels of psychological need satisfaction are related to maladaptive weight-related outcomes in young women.


Appearance-contingent self-worth Appearance anxiety Disordered eating Self-determination theory 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cecilie Thøgersen-Ntoumani
    • 1
  • Nikos Ntoumanis
    • 1
  • Jennifer Cumming
    • 1
  • Nikos L. D. Chatzisarantis
    • 2
  1. 1.College of Life and Environmental SciencesUniversity of BirminghamBirminghamUK
  2. 2.School of EducationNanyang Technical UniversitySingaporeSingapore

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