Pandemic HomeBODIES: The Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Emerging Adults' Body Appreciation, Life Satisfaction, and Affect

  • Author / Creator
    Tulloch, Sierra, LP
  • The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted emerging adults’ lives in various aspects of physical and mental health at least in part because of lack of physical activity and face-to-face socialization paired with increased technology and social media time. In addition, changes such as using video conferencing methods to communicate while working, going to school, and socializing have increased like never before. Given that all of these aspects may be linked to poorer mental health outcomes such as body dissatisfaction and negative body image, it is imperative that we examine how these changes to daily life have influenced people’s thinking about their bodies, life satisfaction, and overall affect. In this study, we examined emerging adults’ body appreciation and wellbeing by comparing secondary data of emerging adults’ ratings on the Body Appreciation Scale 2, before the COVID-19 pandemic (n = 288), to emerging adults during the pandemic (n = 288). Additionally, we examined how body appreciation may serve as a mediator between unique pandemic experiences, such as overall pandemic impact, physical health, and effects of video conferencing methods, and life satisfaction and affect. Independent-samples t-tests determined that ratings of body appreciation were significantly lower for the pandemic sample compared to the pre-pandemic sample (t (574) = 4.39, p < .001). Results from the mediation analyses revealed that body appreciation partially mediated the relationships between participant’s pandemic experiences and life satisfaction, positive affect, and negative affect. The predictors accounted for approximately 28% of the variance in life satisfaction (F (4, 275) = 26.15, p < 0.001). We utilized these results to foster discussion around the importance of bolstering body appreciation and encouraging positive health behaviours in current health care practices as well as informing future preventative efforts and intervention.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2022
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Education
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Library with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.