Attentional Biases Towards Body-Related Stimuli in Healthy Males: A Systematic Review

Alexandra Kirby, Becki Jenks, Francesca Walsh, Michael Duncan

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Recent literature has discussed the role of attentional biases towards body-related stimuli. Specific foci have been on those with high levels of body image concerns and female samples. Unfortunately, there has been limited focus on male samples within existing literature. The aim of the current study was to provide a critical synthesis of the findings of existing studies exploring attentional biases in adult males towards body-related stimuli. Critical synthesis of the findings of 20 studies explored four key methodologies: eye-tracking, dot-probe, visual search, and other methodologies (e.g. ARDPEI task). The current review provides evidence of specific attentional biases towards body-related stimuli in adult males experiencing body image concerns. Similar patterns of attentional biases are also demonstrated in males with body image pathologies. However, there appears to be distinct patterns of attentional biases for male and female participants. It is recommended that future research considers these findings and utilises measures developed specifically for male samples. Furthermore, additional variables require further attention, i.e. reasons for engaging in social comparison and/or engaging in physical activity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)(In-Press)
Number of pages38
JournalPsychological Reports
Early online date21 May 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 May 2023

Bibliographical note

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (


  • body image
  • attentional bias
  • males
  • systematic review
  • body-related stimuli


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