Body image distortion and dissatisfaction in incarcerated women

ABSTRACT Objective To investigate the prevalence of Body Image distortion and dissatisfaction and evaluate the associated factors in incarcerated women in a closed regime. Methods Cross-sectional observational study, conducted with female inmates (n=107) in Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. Personal sociodemographic data were collected through an interview, and the height and weight were measuredto obtain the body mass index. Body image was assessed using a scale of silhouettes fi gures for Brazilian adults. Prevalence Ratios with their respective 95% Confi dence Intervals and Bland-Altman method were used in thestatistical analysis. Results A total of 83.3% of the participants were affected by body image distortion and 91.6% by body image dissatisfaction. More than a half (58.9%) wanted a lower Body Mass Index (9.01±5.25Kg/m2), however, 32.7% wanted to increase the body size (6.43±4.34Kg/m2). The sociodemographic characteristics, nutritional status (PR=0.99; 95%CI:0.89-1.11), and the time of imprisonment (PR=1.06; 95%CI:0.94-1.19) were not associated with Body Image dissatisfaction. No associations were observed between body image distortion and the time ofimprisonment (PR=1.17; 95%CI:0.96-1.42) or nutritional status (PR=1.10; 95%CI:0.89-1.36). Conclusion Most female inmates were dissatisfied with their bodies and distort their body image, indicating the need for these aspects to be included in the health promotion actions in the prison system.