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Does having a healthier body image make it easier for a woman to maintain a happy relationship with her partner?
That’s one of the findings from a new survey of 256 women between the ages of 20 and 45. Each was asked about her level of satisfaction with her weight, her overall body image and the quality of her current relationship.
Women who were satisfied with their body image were found to be better at maintaining happiness in their relationship, suggesting a link between the two.
“When a woman was satisfied with her relationship, she was also satisfied with her body weight, which also applies vice versa,” said study author Sabina Vatter. “Higher body-weight satisfaction results in higher satisfaction with a relationship.”
Vatter, a postgraduate student at Tallinn University, said when a person’s body image is strong, it helps the relationship along and vice versa. The two appear to support each other as well as working in tandem toward greater overall satisfaction.
“Women satisfied with their body were better
at maintaining happiness in their relationship.”
“This shows that body and body weight can create general satisfaction, which would be forwarded to feelings for a romantic partner,” she said.
Additionally, those participants who were dieting or had previously dieted were found more likely to be self-conscious about their bodies.
“Women who have dieted had more extreme standards of appearance,” Vatter said. “Even a normal weight would seem unattractive for them. They were further from their ideal appearance due to their excessive weight, and they were more attentive and aware of their body shape.”
Women who were most critical of their own body image were found to be less likely to have satisfaction in their relationship, including the sexual component.
In conclusion, Vatter said, “In order to feel good and happy in a relationship, one should have positive feelings toward their body and feel comfortable in their body because without this a woman might feel dissatisfaction toward the relationship.”