Overweight teens who are satisfied with their bodies are less depressed, less prone to unhealthy behaviors

April 27, 2012

A study to be published in the June 2012 issue of Journal of Adolescent Health looking at the relationships between body satisfaction and healthy psychological functioning in overweight adolescents has found that young women who are happy with the size and shape of their bodies report higher levels of self-esteem. They may also be protected against the negative behavioral and psychological factors sometimes associated with being overweight.

A group of 103 overweight adolescents were surveyed between 2004 and 2006, assessing body satisfaction, weight-control behavior, importance placed on thinness, self-esteem and symptoms of , among other factors.

"We found that girls with high body satisfaction had a lower likelihood of unhealthy weight-control behaviors like fasting, skipping meals or vomiting," said Kerri Boutelle, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. Boutelle added that the positive relationship shown in this study between body a girl's happiness with her body and her behavioral and psychological well-being suggests that improving could be a key component of interventions for overweight youth.

"A focus on enhancing self-image while providing motivation and skills to engage in effect weight-control behaviors may help protect young girls from feelings of depression, anxiety or anger sometimes association with being overweight," said Boutelle.

Explore further: How to best help your child lose weight: Lose weight yourself

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Should more kids have their tonsils out?

January 17, 2017

(HealthDay)—Because of stringent tonsillectomy guidelines, some kids who could benefit from tonsil removal surgery aren't getting it, two new reviews suggest.

Teens unlikely to be harmed by moderate digital screen use

January 13, 2017

Parents and pediatricians alike may worry about the effects of teens' screen time, but new findings from over 120,000 adolescents in the UK indicate that the relationship between screen time and well-being is weak at best, ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

rwinners
not rated yet Apr 29, 2012
If overweight teens are satisfied, that probably just shows that their parents have not ridiculed them because of their weight.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.