Exploring the Tripartite Influence Model of body dissatisfaction in postpartum women Academic Article uri icon


  • Pregnancy and childbirth result in dramatic changes in a woman's body shape, which can be associated with body image concerns. To date, however, little is known about how sociocultural factors may influence body dissatisfaction in postpartum women. This study aimed to test a sociocultural model of body image and eating concerns among a sample of postpartum women. A sample of N=474 women, mean (SD) age=30.6 (4.8), having given birth during the last year, completed an online survey and reported on sociocultural pressures from media, peers, family and partners, thin-ideal internalization, appearance comparison, body dissatisfaction, and psychological functioning. Structural equation modeling analyses revealed a good fit to the data, χ2 (49)=220.20, p<.001, RMSEA=.086, CFI=.93. Findings suggest that women experience strong sociocultural pressures to attain unrealistic body shapes/sizes during the post-pregnancy period, contributing to their body image concerns.

publication date

  • 2018