Overweight Misperception Among Adolescents in the United States
Journal of Pediatric Nursing, Volume 29, Issue 6, 2014, pp. 536-546
26 Pages Posted: 24 Dec 2014
Date Written: 2014
The purpose of this study was to examine the discrepancies between perceived and reported overweight status among U.S. adolescents, and to identify factors contributing to such discrepancies. Using the Youth Risk Behavior and Surveillance Survey data (YRBSS years 2001-2009), we compare perceived and reported overweight status across age, gender, and race in 72825 youth. We found statistically significant, gender and racial specific discrepancies between perceived and reported overweight status. Females were more likely to have false positive overweight perception (except black females), while males exhibit a higher likelihood of false negative perception. The logistic estimation results show that factors such as body mass index (BMI), school performance, and being sexually active are strong predictors of overweight misperception. The findings suggest that evidence based strategies should be employed to help adolescents establish correct weight perception. These strategies should also be tailored based on gender, race, and weight perception of target audience.
Keywords: childhood obesity, adolescent, overweight perception, perceived weight status, reported weight status
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