CitationPesa, J. A.; Syre, T. R.; & Jones, E. (2000). Psychosocial Differences Associated with Body Weight Among Female Adolescents: The Importance of Body Image. Journal of Adolescent Health. vol. 26 (5) pp. 330-337
AbstractPurpose: To determine whether overweight female adolescents differ from normal and underweight female adolescents with respect to a set of psychosocial factors, while controlling for body image.
Methods: Female participants of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (n = 3197) were selected for analysis. Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA) was used to test whether overweight subjects differed from normal and underweight subjects with respect to measures of depression, self-esteem, trouble in school, school connectedness, family connectedness, sense of community, autonomy, protective factors, and grades. Stepdown F-tests and discriminant function coefficients provided information regarding the strength of specific factors in contributing to overall differences.
Results: MANOVA revealed significant differences between groups on the combined set of psychosocial factors. Self-esteem defined the difference in a positive direction while grades defined the difference inversely. When controlling for body image, multidimensional group differences were still evident; however, self-esteem was no longer a significant contributing variable.
Conclusions: While overweight female adolescents seem to suffer from low self-esteem, it may be explained by body image. Efforts should be directed toward encouraging and supporting healthy eating patterns and physical activity while encouraging students to recognize personal strengths not related to physique.
Reference TypeJournal Article
Journal TitleJournal of Adolescent Health
Author(s)Pesa, J. A.
Syre, T. R.