Exploring the Relationship between Body Image and Alcohol Consumption among Sorority Members and Non-Members

Antonia Caba

Abstract


Around 60% of college students report consuming alcohol in a given month3.In addition, many college women experience poor body image and body dissatisfaction6.Negative body image has been associated with health-compromising behaviors such as increased alcohol consumption.  Further, women who have a more positive body image tend to not drink as heavily as those with poor body image8.Whereas negative body image is an issue faced by college women in general, it is especially prevalent among women who participate in Greek life. One month after joining a sorority, women’s incidence of body shaming increased compared to those who did not join Greek life11.However, research has not yet examined the correlation between body image satisfaction and rate of alcohol consumption among women who participate in a social Greek organization compared to those who do not.  To explore this relationship, an online survey was conducted at a medium-sized university in the Midwest. The survey included the Body Shape Questionnaire, a 34-item measure of body shape preoccupation, as well as questions about alcohol consumption. Of the 337 female participants, 128 (38.2%) were in a social sorority and 207 (57.6%) were unaffiliated. Results suggest alcohol consumption was a significant predictor of body dissatisfaction for both Greeks and non-Greek women. However, being in a sorority was not a significant predictor of body dissatisfaction. These findings highlight the importance of encouraging positive body image as an intervention for poor health behaviors such as excess drinking.


Keywords


Body Image; Alcohol; Sorority

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