The Role of School Contexts in Adolescents’ Weight-loss Behaviors and Self-perceptions of Overweight

Citation

Mueller, Anna S. (2015). The Role of School Contexts in Adolescents' Weight-loss Behaviors and Self-perceptions of Overweight. Sociological Inquiry. vol. 85 (4) pp. 532-555

Abstract

Using the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health and multilevel modeling, this study investigates the role high school social contexts play in the development of adolescents' weight-loss behaviors and overweight self-perceptions. Overall, the results indicate that there is an important association between adolescents' weight-loss behaviors and self-perceptions of overweight and the weight-related context of their school. For example, both adolescent boys and girls are less likely to engage in weight-loss behaviors when overweight is prevalent among their same-sex schoolmates. However, gender differences are also found. For example, while adolescent boys' self-perceptions of overweight are significantly associated with their same-sex schoolmates' characteristics and behaviors, this is not the case for adolescent girls. Overall, these findings suggest that meso-level social contexts—such as schools—may be particularly important to how individuals incorporate macro-level beliefs or values—such as gendered body ideals—into their own behaviors and self-concepts.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/soin.12091

Keyword(s)

Adolescent obesity

Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Sociological Inquiry

Author(s)

Mueller, Anna S.

Year Published

2015

Volume Number

85

Issue Number

4

Pages

532-555

Edition

6/2015

ISSN/ISBN

1475-682X

DOI

10.1111/soin.12091

NIHMSID

NIHMS698738

Reference ID

7010