Advertisement

Mindfulness

, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 679–688 | Cite as

Does Thought Suppression Mediate the Association Between Mindfulness and Body Satisfaction?

  • Jessica Barrington
  • Josée L. JarryEmail author
ORIGINAL PAPER

Abstract

Mindfulness is the tendency to pay attention, on purpose and in an open and non-judgmental way, to internal experiences such as thoughts, emotions, and sensations. Higher dispositional mindfulness is associated with higher body satisfaction, but the mechanism of this association remains unclear. In the present study, thought suppression was tested as a mediator of the association between mindfulness and body satisfaction in five models, each using one of the five mindfulness facets identified by Baer et al. (Assessment 13:27–45, 2006) as predictors. Five alternative models also were tested with thought suppression as the predictor and with the five mindfulness facets as mediators. Participants (N = 234) completed online measures of mindfulness, thought suppression, and body satisfaction. Observing was neither directly nor indirectly associated with body satisfaction. Results suggest a bi-directional association between thought suppression and the facets describing and acting with awareness, in their association with body satisfaction. The association between non-judging and body satisfaction was not mediated, suggesting that this facet may apply not only to negative appearance thoughts but also to appearance as the object of these thoughts. Non-reactivity was associated with higher body satisfaction only through low thought suppression. In terms of the prevention and treatment of body dissatisfaction, our results suggest that training in describing and acting with awareness may naturally entrain low thought suppression and vice versa. Training in non-judgment may directly result in lowering negative appearance judgment, thus improving body satisfaction. However, training in non-reactivity to distressing appearance thoughts may require concurrent training in the management of these thoughts to ultimately improve body satisfaction.

Keywords

Mindfulness Body satisfaction Thought suppression Mediation 

Notes

Author Contributions

JB: designed and executed the study, analyzed the data, and wrote the initial drafts of the paper. JLJ: supervised the design of the study and edited the manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the University of Windsor Research Ethics Board and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in this study.

References

  1. Adams, C. E., McVay, M. A., Stewart, D. W., Vinci, C., Kinsaul, J., Benitez, L., & Copeland, A. L. (2014). Mindfulness ameliorates the relationship between weight concerns and smoking behavior in female smokers: a cross-sectional investigation. Mindfulness, 5, 179–185.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-012-0163-9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Baer, R. A. (2003). Mindfulness training as a clinical intervention: a conceptual and empirical review. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10(2), 125–143.  https://doi.org/10.1093/clipsy/bpg015.Google Scholar
  3. Baer, R. A., Smith, G. T., & Allen, K. B. (2004). Assessment of mindfulness by self-report: the Kentucky Inventory of Mindfulness Skills. Assessment, 11, 191–206.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1073191104268029.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Baer, R. A., Smith, G. T., Hopkins, J., Krietemeyer, J., & Toney, L. (2006). Using self-report assessment methods to explore facets of mindfulness. Assessment, 13, 27–45.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1073191105283504.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Baer, R. A., Smith, G. T., Lykins, E., Button, D., Krietemeyer, J., Sauer, S., Walsh, E., Duggan, D., & Williams, J. M. G. (2008). Construct validity of the five-facet mindfulness questionnaire in meditating and nonmeditating samples. Assessment, 15, 329–342.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1073191107313003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brown, K., & Ryan, R. M. (2003). The benefits of being present: mindfulness and its role in psychological well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 822–848.  https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.84.4.822.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Brown, T. A., Cash, T. F., & Mikulka, P. J. (1990). Attitudinal Body-Image Assessment: Factor Analysis of the Body-Self Relations Questionnaire. Journal of Personality Assessment, 55, 135–144.  https://doi.org/10.1080/00223891.1990.9674053.
  8. Cebolla, A., Campos, D., Galiana, L., Oliver, A., Tomás, J. M., Feliu-Soler, A., et al. (2017). Exploring relations among mindfulness facets and various meditation practices: do they work in different ways? Consciousness and Cognition, 49, 172–180.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.concog.2017.01.012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Cohen, J., Cohen, P., West, S. G., & Aiken, L. S. (2015). Applied multiple regression/correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  10. Dekeyser, M., Raes, F., Leijssen, M., Leysen, S., & Dewulf, D. (2008). Mindfulness skills and interpersonal behaviour. Personality and Individual Differences, 44, 1235–1245.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2007.11.018.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Dijkstra, P., & Barelds, D. H. (2011). Examining a model of dispositional mindfulness, body comparison, and body satisfaction. Body Image, 8, 419–422.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bodyim.2011.05.007.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Feldman, G., Hayes, A., Kumar, S., Greeson, J., & Laurenceau, J.-P. (2007). Mindfulness and emotion regulation: The development and initial validation of the Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale-Revised (CMS-R). Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 29, 177–190.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10862-006-9035-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Field, A. (2009). Discovering statistics using SPSS (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, Inc..Google Scholar
  14. Garland, E. L., & Roberts-Lewis, A. (2013). Differential roles of thought suppression and dispositional mindfulness in posttraumatic stress symptoms and craving. Addictive Behaviors, 38, 1555–1562.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.addbeh.2012.02.004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Gillen, M. M., & Lefkowitz, E. S. (2006). Gender role development and body image among male and female first year college students. Sex Roles, 55(1–2), 25–37.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s11199-006-9057-4.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Hayes, A. (2013). Introduction to mediation, moderation, and conditional process analysis: a regression-based approach. New York: The Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  17. Heinberg, J. L. (1996). Theories of body image: perceptual, developmental and sociocultural factors. In J. K. Thomson (Ed.), Body image, eating disorders and obesity: an integrative guide for assessment and treatment (pp. 27–48). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
  18. Kabat-Zinn, J. (2003). Mindfulness-based interventions in context: past, present and future. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10, 144–156.  https://doi.org/10.1093/clipsy/bpg016.Google Scholar
  19. Lavender, J. M., Jardin, B. F., & Anderson, D. A. (2009). Bulimic symptoms in undergraduate men and women: contributions of mindfulness and thought suppression. Eating Behaviors, 10, 228–231.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eatbeh.2009.07.002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Malinowski, P. (2008). Mindfulness as psychological dimension: concepts and applications. The Irish Journal of Psychology, 29, 155–166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Masuda, A., Price, M., & Latzman, R. D. (2012). Mindfulness moderates the relationship between disordered eating cognitions and disordered eating behaviors in a non-clinical college sample. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 34, 107–115.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s10862-011-9252-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Muris, P., Merckelbach, H., & Horselenberg, R. (1996). Individual differences in thought suppression. The White Bear Suppression Inventory: factor structure, reliability, validity and correlates. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 34, 501–513.  https://doi.org/10.1016/0005-7967(96)00005-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Neighbors, L. A., & Sobal, J. (2007). Prevalence and magnitude of body weight and shape dissatisfaction among university students. Eating Behaviors, 8, 429–439.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eatbeh.2007.03.003.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Nitzan-Assayag, Y., Yuval, K., Tanay, G., Aderka, I. M., Vujanovic, A. A., Litz, B., & Bernstein, A. (2017). Reduced reactivity to and suppression of thoughts mediate the effects of mindfulness training on recovery outcomes following exposure to potentially traumatic stress. Mindfulness, 8(4), 920–932.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-016-0666-x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Prowse, E., Bore, M., & Dyer, S. (2013). Eating disorder symptomatology, body image, and mindfulness: findings in a non-clinical sample. Clinical Psychologist, 17, 77–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Rakhkovskaya, L. M., & Warren, C. S. (2016). Sociocultural and identity predictors of body dissatisfaction in ethnically diverse college women. Body Image, 16, 32–40.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bodyim.2015.10.004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Rodgers, R. F., Salès, P., & Chabrol, H. (2010). Psychological functioning, media pressure and body dissatisfaction among college women. European Review of Applied Psychology/Revue Européenne de Psychologie Appliquée, 60, 89–95.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erap.2009.10.001.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Sanftner, J. L., Ryan, W. J., & Pierce, P. (2009). Application of a relational model to understanding body image in college women and men. Journal of College Student Psychotherapy, 23, 262–280.  https://doi.org/10.1080/87568220903167182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Striegel-Moore, R. H., Silberstein, L. R., & Rodin, J. (1986). Toward an understanding of risk factors for bulimia. American Psychologist, 41, 246–263.  https://doi.org/10.1037//0003-066x.41.3.246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Tabachnick, B. G., & Fidell, L. S. (2007). Using multivariate statistics (5th ed.). New York: Allyn and Bacon.Google Scholar
  31. Ward, R. M., & Hay, M. C. (2015). Depression, coping, hassles, and body dissatisfaction: factors associated with disordered eating. Eating Behaviors, 17, 14–18.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eatbeh.2014.12.002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Watkins, E. (2004). Appraisals and strategies associated with rumination and worry. Personality and Individual Differences, 37(4), 679–694.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2003.10.002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Wegner, D. M., & Zanakos, S. (1994). Chronic thought suppression. Journal of Personality, 62, 615–640.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6494.1994.tb00311.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Williams, M. J. Dalgleish, T., Karl, A., & Kuyken, W. (2014) Examining the factor structures of the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire and the Self-Compassion Scale. Psychological Assessment, 26, 407–418.  https://doi.org/10.1037/a0035566.
  35. Zhao, X., Lynch, J. G., & Chen, Q. (2010). Reconsidering Baron and Kenny: myths and truths about mediation analysis. Journal of Consumer Research, 37, 197–206.  https://doi.org/10.1086/651257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of WindsorWindsorCanada

Personalised recommendations