Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Education and Human Services


Counseling, Rehabilitation Counseling & Counseling Psychology

Committee Chair

Monica Leppma

Committee Co-Chair

James Bartee

Committee Member

Jeffrey Daniels

Committee Member

Christa Lilly

Committee Member

Christine Schimmel


Although eating disorders and related interventions have been heavily researched, less is known about potentially protective variables, including self-compassion, mindfulness, and emotion regulation. It is important to understand these constructs and their relationship to eating disorder symptoms because such factors may prevent these disorders in at-risk individuals and aid in more successful psychotherapeutic outcomes. Independent theories related to these variables and their relationship to disordered eating have been postulated, but not yet combined into a single model. In this study, 100 university students completed self-report surveys that were analyzed using a Path Analysis (PA) method. This method tested an integrated model of the influence of mindfulness, self-compassion, and emotion regulation on eating disorder symptoms. The results indicate that higher levels of self-compassion are related to higher levels of mindfulness, both of which are predictive of lower levels of emotion regulation difficulties and lower levels of disordered eating. Emotion regulation partially mediated the relationships between self-compassion and eating disorder symptoms and between mindfulness and eating disorder symptoms through self-compassion. Self-compassion was also directly related to eating disorder symptoms. Clinical implications and recommendations for future research are provided in the context of the study's limitations.