The Role of Restrictive Emotionality and Social Interaction Anxiety in the Association Between Muscle Dysmorphic Disorder and Masculine Depression

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Abstract

Muscle dysmorphic disorder (MDD) is a mental disorder characterized by men’s exaggerated self-perception as insufficiently muscular and lean and pathological preoccupation with achieving a muscular body. MDD has been recognized as a risk factor associated with negative mental health outcomes in men. However, previous studies did not sufficiently explore the link between MDD and masculine depression. Therefore, the present study examines the mediating role of social interaction anxiety and the moderating role of restrictive emotionality in the relationship between MDD and masculine depression. Structured questionnaires were distributed online among 849 Israeli men. The moderated mediation analysis indicated that a positive association between MDD and masculine depression was moderated by restrictive emotionality and partially mediated by social interaction anxiety. These findings have profound meaning in terms of the psychosocial aspects of men’s lives, underlining the risk factors inherent in the association between men’s dissatisfaction with their body and their mental health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)50-64
Number of pages15
JournalThe Journal of Men's Studies
Volume32
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2024

Keywords

  • masculine depression
  • masculine norms
  • muscle dysmorphic disorder
  • restrictive emotionality
  • social interaction anxiety

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