Positive Rational Acceptance of Body Image Threats Mediates the Association between Nature Exposure and Body Appreciation
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionEcopsychology. 2022, 14 (2), 118-125. 10.1089/eco.2021.0029
Mounting evidence suggests that exposure to natural environments is associated with more positive body image, but mechanistic pathways are not fully understood. In this study, we tested one such indirect pathway involving positive rational acceptance (PRA) (i.e., an adaptive body image coping strategy). A total of 401 participants from the United Kingdom completed measures of nature exposure, PRA, and body appreciation (i.e., a facet of positive body image). Correlational analyses indicated positive, although weak-to-moderate, associations between all three constructs. Mediation analysis supported the hypothesis that PRA mediates the association between nature exposure and body appreciation. These findings were robust in the total sample, as well as in women (n = 200) and men (n = 197) separately. These results highlight the potential benefit of nature exposure in terms of promoting adaptive body image coping strategies, which in turn are associated with more positive body image.