Relationships among selfie-viewing on social media, thin-ideal internalization, and restrained eating in adolescents: The buffering role of media literacy


The aim of the present study was to test the relationship between selfie-viewing on social media and restrained eating as well as the mediating effect of thin-ideal internalization in this relationship. We also examined whether the links from selfie-viewing to thin-ideal internalization and restrained eating would be moderated by media literacy. Moreover, whether gender would moderate the mediation model was also examined. Results on a survey of 1,481 Chinese adolescents aged 12–⁠19 years showed that selfie-viewing had a positive relationship with restrained eating and that thin-ideal internalization mediated this relationship. Furthermore, the association between selfie-viewing and thin-ideal internalization was moderated by media literacy. Specifically, the relationship was weaker for adolescents with higher media literacy. In other words, media literacy alleviated the negative effect of selfie-viewing on body image. Moreover, there were no gender differences in the mediation model. These findings add to the literature on the relationship between social media use and restrained eating. Educational programs aiming to improve media literacy may be beneficial for reducing the risk of restrained eating among adolescents

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Masaryk University Journals / Časopisy Masarykovy univerzity

Last time updated on 15/02/2024

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