Correlates of Weight Perceptions among Adolescents

Gene Oliverius, Darlene Haff*,Nevada State College

Full manuscript:

Abstract This study of weight perceptions among adolescents used data from the 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System to analyze the bivariate relationships between self-image, depressive symptomatology, physical activity, and attempts to change perceived weight differences. Results show a statistically significant relationship between overweight perceptions and trying to lose weight, as well as relationships between feeling sad / helpless and perception of weight and between days of activity and perception of weight. The manuscript concludes with a discussion stressing the importance of education for adolescents in improving self-image.

Introduction According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2010) adolescent obesity is a serious risk to America’s youth. This report indicated a prevalence of obesity among 17 percent of children ages 2-19 years. Although many studies look at the direct health implications of obesity in adolescence, the purpose of this study was to analyze the effects of self-esteem on self-perceptions of weight among adolescents. The current study analyzed secondary data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) to determine if there was a significant relationship between self-esteem and perception of body weight in adolescents.

Read the full manuscript: