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Title:Adolescent Attitudes Toward Obesity in Women: A Study of Sociodemographic Variables
Author(s):Rubin, Marcia Ann
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Creswell, William, Jr.,
Department / Program:Health and Safety Studies
Discipline:Health and Safety Studies
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Women's Studies
Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies
Education, Health
Abstract:Obesity is a physical condition of complex etiology with serious psychological and medical consequences. The purpose of this study was to examine adolescents' attitudes toward obesity in women. Attitudes were analyzed with particular attention to the factors of race, age, sex, social status and obesity status.
Data were obtained from a sample of 355 students enrolled in mandatory health classes in the 7th and 10th grade in a midwest public school system. Information was obtained by questionnaire and included demographic data as well as information on perceived weight status, desired weight status, subjective definition of fatness and perceived causes of obesity. Attitude was measured using a 20 item Semantic Differential Scale in addition to a Likert Scale of beliefs and behavioral predispositions.
The data revealed that adolescents are keenly aware of the negative social and aesthetic implication of obesity in our society. The independent variables of age, socioeconomic status or weight status (BMI) were shown to have no significant relationship with attitude toward obesity when all other variables were controlled. Sex differences were limited; females were slightly more tolerant than males of obesity in others and slightly less tolerant of fatness in themselves. Racial differences were considerable. Regardless of socioeconomic status, black males and females were significantly less negative than white adolescents regarding obesity in women. Black adolescents perceived obesity at significantly higher levels of body size than white adolescents. In addition, black adolescents indicated that both extremes of obesity and thinness were unhealthy, whereas white adolescents believed only overweight and obesity were unhealthy.
Issue Date:1988
Description:235 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1988.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8908819
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-16
Date Deposited:1988

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