Women who were physically abused during childhood more likely to be obese

Women with a history of childhood physical abuse are more likely to become obese adults, according to a new study by University of Toronto researchers.

Results indicate that women who were physically abused in childhood were more likely to be obese than women from non-abusive homes.

"After adjusting for age and race, childhood was associated with 47% higher odds of obesity for women" says lead author Esme Fuller-Thomson, Professor and Sandra Rotman Endowed Chair in the University of Toronto's Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work. "Among men, obesity wasn't associated with childhood physical abuse."

"We had anticipated that the association between childhood physical abuse and obesity among women would be explained by factors including depression and anxiety, adult socio-economic position, , and other childhood adversities, such as having a parent addicted to drugs or alcohol," says study co-author and doctoral student Deborah Sinclair. "However, even after taking into account all these factors, women from physically abusive families still had 35% higher odds of obesity."

The study could not determine the reason for the relationship between childhood physical abuse and women's obesity. "It is unclear why childhood physical abuse is associated with among women but not men; it may reflect gender differences in coping mechanisms," says study co-author and doctoral candidate Sarah Brennenstuhl.

More information: www.karger.com/Article/Pdf/354609

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Childhood abuse linked with food addiction in adult women

May 29, 2013

Women who experienced severe physical or sexual abuse during childhood are much more likely to have a food addiction as adults than women who did not experience such abuse, according to a new study published in the journal ...

Childhood sexual abuse linked to later heart attacks in men

Sep 06, 2012

(Medical Xpress)—Men who experienced childhood sexual abuse are three times more likely to have a heart attack than men who were not sexually abused as children, according to a new study from researchers at the University ...

Physical abuse may raise risk of suicidal thoughts

Apr 24, 2012

The study, published online this month in the journal Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, found that approximately one-third of adults who were physically abused in childhood had seriously considered taking their own li ...

Recommended for you

Report highlights progress, challenges in health IT

14 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Progress has been made toward widespread adoption of electronic health records (EHRs), although there are still barriers to adoption of advanced use of EHRs, according to a report published ...

Training your brain to prefer healthy foods

14 hours ago

It may be possible to train the brain to prefer healthy low-calorie foods over unhealthy higher-calorie foods, according to new research by scientists at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center ...

Outdoor enthusiasts need a lightning plan

14 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Those partaking in outdoor sports and activities need to be aware of the threat posed by lightning and take appropriate safety measures, experts say.

User comments