Interactive Effects of Instagram Foodies' Hashtagged #Foodporn and Peer Users' Eating Disorder on Eating Intention, Envy, Parasocial Interaction, and Online Friendship

Seunga Jin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations


Drawing from social comparison theory, parasocial interaction (PSI) theory, and the literature on envy, a randomized experiment addressed the dynamics of body image, fame, and envy in the context of foodies' foodporn posting on Instagram. Using a 2 (foodie's body type: fat vs. thin) × 2 (foodie's Instagram popularity: unpopular vs. popular) between-subjects design, this experiment (N = 141) examined the effects of an Instagram foodie's body shape and popularity level on peer Instagram users' eating intention, envy, and PSI with the Instagram foodie. The results showed main effects of an Instagram foodie's body shape on peer users' eating intention, and moderating effects of users' self-esteem, body mass index, perfectionism, anorexia, and bulimia nervosa. Additionally, envy mediated the effects of the Instagram foodie's body shape and popularity on peer users' PSI with the foodie and intention to build an Instagram-based friendship. Theoretical contributions to the literature on social comparison and eating disorder and practical implications for fitspiration and social media-based health interventions are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-167
Number of pages11
JournalCyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2018



  • Instagram foodies
  • fitspiration
  • food fetishization
  • foodporn hashtags
  • parasocial interaction
  • perfectionism
  • social comparison
  • social media envy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Communication
  • Applied Psychology
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Science Applications

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