Poster Presentations

Start Date

20-5-2014 12:30 PM

Description

The present investigation assessed self-esteem effects on biological and subjective chronic stress measures, including cardiovascular parameters, health indicators, and mood. Moderators were examined, including vagal tone and social identity. High self-esteem was associated with higher baseline positivity, lower baseline negativity, and lower subjective stress across numerous domains including: city stress, chaos at home, and perceived stress (all p<.05). Vagal tone moderated the relationship between self-esteem and the chronic stress measure: hair cortisol (p<.05). The high self-esteem group showed lower cortisol, particularly when coupled with high vagal tone. Individuals with low vagal tone had the highest cortisol; for those individuals, high self-esteem does not appear to buffer this relationship. Vagal tone also moderated the relationship between self-esteem and resting heart rate (p<.05). Individuals with low vagal tone showed higher resting heart rate and high self-esteem did not appear to buffer this effect. Social identity, specifically positive race/ethnic identity, moderated the relationship between self-esteem and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR). Specifically, individuals with low self-esteem and low social identity showed the highest WHR. For those with low social identity and high self-esteem, however, WHR was decreased. These findings indicate that high self-esteem may be related to health, mood, and lower subjective stress. High self-esteem may not be sufficient, however, to buffer physiological indicators of chronic stress in individuals with low vagal tone. Additionally, personal self-esteem may more strongly influence health in individuals who do not have strong social identity. Future directions include investigating psychosocial factors that increase vagal tone to improve mood and well-being.

Comments

Abstract of poster presented at the 2014 UMass Center for Clinical and Translational Science Research Retreat, held on May 20, 2014 at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Mass.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License
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May 20th, 12:30 PM

Self-esteem Influences on Multiple Domains: Stress, Health, Mood, and Social Identity

The present investigation assessed self-esteem effects on biological and subjective chronic stress measures, including cardiovascular parameters, health indicators, and mood. Moderators were examined, including vagal tone and social identity. High self-esteem was associated with higher baseline positivity, lower baseline negativity, and lower subjective stress across numerous domains including: city stress, chaos at home, and perceived stress (all p<.05). Vagal tone moderated the relationship between self-esteem and the chronic stress measure: hair cortisol (p<.05). The high self-esteem group showed lower cortisol, particularly when coupled with high vagal tone. Individuals with low vagal tone had the highest cortisol; for those individuals, high self-esteem does not appear to buffer this relationship. Vagal tone also moderated the relationship between self-esteem and resting heart rate (p<.05). Individuals with low vagal tone showed higher resting heart rate and high self-esteem did not appear to buffer this effect. Social identity, specifically positive race/ethnic identity, moderated the relationship between self-esteem and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR). Specifically, individuals with low self-esteem and low social identity showed the highest WHR. For those with low social identity and high self-esteem, however, WHR was decreased. These findings indicate that high self-esteem may be related to health, mood, and lower subjective stress. High self-esteem may not be sufficient, however, to buffer physiological indicators of chronic stress in individuals with low vagal tone. Additionally, personal self-esteem may more strongly influence health in individuals who do not have strong social identity. Future directions include investigating psychosocial factors that increase vagal tone to improve mood and well-being.

 

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