Self-Weighing Among Teens Linked To Weight Concerns, Depression, Low Self-Esteem

Posted: Nov 9 2015, 8:23am CST | by , Updated: Nov 9 2015, 9:18pm CST, in News | Latest Science News


Teen on self-weigh
Photo credit: Getty Images

A new study published in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior by researchers from the University of Minnesota has found an association between self-weighing among teenagers and weight concerns, depression, and low self-esteem among other personality disorders.

The study was part of Project EAT (Eating and Activity in Teens and Young Adults) which tracked over 1,900 young adults over a 10 year period. The researchers found that there is a link between teens who self-weigh and elevated concerns for personal weight and reduced body satisfaction among others.

"Females who strongly agreed they self-weighed reported engaging in extremely dangerous weight-control behaviors at a rate of 80%," said Carly R. Pacanowski, PhD, RD, lead author of the study.

"Adolescent obesity is a public health concern, but body dissatisfaction and weight concerns are predictors of eating disorders. This makes it critical that obesity-prevention programs avoid exacerbating these predictors by understanding how behaviors such as self-weighing affect teens," Pacanowski added.

The Project EAT study was a longitudinal cohort research that enabled researchers to investigate the links between self-weighing and variations in weight, psychological changes, and behavioral outcomes.

Meanwhile, ideal weight, body satisfaction, self-weighing, weight concern, depression signs, and self-esteem were marked on a Likert scale, and this was analyzed with self-reported healthy and wrong behaviors that teens engaged in that could jeopardize the above factors. BMI for each participant was also taken.

The authors of the study wanted to see how self-weighing changes affected the other listed variables; and they found out that most females who self-weighed had more concerns for their weight and body and also suffered depressive symptoms and low self-esteem. This makes self-weighing among female teens a harmful behavior.

"Clinicians should ask adolescent patients about self-weighing at office visits to determine any benefits or negative outcomes," Pacanowski added. "Noting changes in this behavior over time can be helpful for investigating other, more concerning changes in well-being among young adults."

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/52" rel="author">Charles I. Omedo</a>
Charles is covering the latest discoveries in science and health as well as new developments in technology. He is the Chief Editor or Intel-News.




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