Event Title

Stigmatized: Fearing Fat Leads to Choosing Higher Calorie Foods among the Overweight in Response to Stigmatizing Images

Presenter Information

Tanya Patterson
Ramiro Ferreyra

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation/Art Exihibt

College

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Major

Psychology

Location

Event Center A & B

Faculty Mentor

Joseph Wellman

Start Date

5-19-2016 1:00 PM

End Date

5-19-2016 2:30 PM

Abstract

The overweight are consistently presented in the media as lazy, sloppy, and unintelligent. Previous research has suggested that weight stigma and fear of fat (FoF) may increase eating behavior and weight gain among the overweight. In the present study, we examined how weight stigmatizing images influence calorie selection among average and overweight individuals based on their FoF. Participants were randomly assigned to view stigmatizing images of the overweight, non-stigmatizing images of the overweight, or neutral images (i.e., objects). They then reviewed a restaurant menu and selected what they would like to eat. Finally, participants completed measures of perceived weight stigma and FoF. Results showed that the more overweight participants feared fat, the more calories they ordered in the stigmatizing condition. The opposite pattern was observed among average weight individuals in the stigmatizing condition. Fear of fat did not predict calorie selection in any of the other conditions. In an additional study, we replicated our calorie finding among a group of self-perceived overweight participants. Findings will be discussed from a resource depletion perspective.

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May 19th, 1:00 PM May 19th, 2:30 PM

Stigmatized: Fearing Fat Leads to Choosing Higher Calorie Foods among the Overweight in Response to Stigmatizing Images

Event Center A & B

The overweight are consistently presented in the media as lazy, sloppy, and unintelligent. Previous research has suggested that weight stigma and fear of fat (FoF) may increase eating behavior and weight gain among the overweight. In the present study, we examined how weight stigmatizing images influence calorie selection among average and overweight individuals based on their FoF. Participants were randomly assigned to view stigmatizing images of the overweight, non-stigmatizing images of the overweight, or neutral images (i.e., objects). They then reviewed a restaurant menu and selected what they would like to eat. Finally, participants completed measures of perceived weight stigma and FoF. Results showed that the more overweight participants feared fat, the more calories they ordered in the stigmatizing condition. The opposite pattern was observed among average weight individuals in the stigmatizing condition. Fear of fat did not predict calorie selection in any of the other conditions. In an additional study, we replicated our calorie finding among a group of self-perceived overweight participants. Findings will be discussed from a resource depletion perspective.