Eating Disorders Among Different Cultures: Annotated Bibliography

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1.Simpson, K. (2002). Anorexia nervosa and culture. Journal Of Psychiatric & Mental

Health Nursing, 9(1), 65-71.

This article describes how unrealistic standards of attractiveness set by Western society are internalized by women from a variety of cultural backgrounds and translated into fat-phobia and body dissatisfaction and then discusses alternative cultural influences for food refusal such as issues of control, acculturation, and religious asceticism. The author claims that there is a need for culturally sensitive questionnaires and diagnostic criteria and suggests that the notion of anorexia as a culture bound syndrome is no longer valid as the illness as been identified in a number of non-western societies. A valid point is made about the importance to acknowledge that anorexia nervosa may exist without a fear of fatness and that there may be other cultural reasons for self-starvation. However, no concrete solution is suggested as how assessment can be conducted with non-white, non-western populations in order to avoid being confined by Western diagnosis criteria. (DONE Etiology 1)

2.Bettendorf, S. K., & Fischer, A. R. (2009). Cultural strengths as moderators of the

relationship between acculturation to the mainstream U.S. Society and eating and

body-related concerns among Mexican American women. Journal Of Counseling

Psychology, 56(3), 430-440. doi:10.1037/a0016382

Discusses how ethic identity, familism, and enculturation serve as protection from issues of acculturation to mainstream U.S. society, specifically eating and body related concerns faced by Mexican American women. Results reveal that adherence to family values may serve as protection to the adverse effects of living in a society that...

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...o how the transmission of dietary habits between generations such as food preferences and restrictive habits may translate into healthy or unhealthy eating behaviors. The second element of the model refers to how body image ideals impact maladaptive eating behavior and finally, the third component refers to perceptions of health an how the meaning of eating disorder symptoms are influenced by culture. The author provides a thorough discussion about how globalization leads cultures to influence each other and highlights the need for a theoretical and experimental appreciation of the cultural impact on eating disorders. An interesting point is made when author mentions that during the Great Depression, in times of food shortage, eating disorders were uncommon, suggesting that the larger social context has a decisive influence on eating patterns. (DONE).

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