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Obesity Study Results
How Obese Teenagers Behave Compared to Normal Weight Teenagers
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Part 2 - Obesity Study Results

For Part 1, see Obesity Behavior

Obesity Behavior Study - Results
After adjustment for grade level, race, and parental socio-economic status, obese girls, when compared with their average weight counterparts, were 1.63 (95 percent confidence interval [CI]: 1.16, 2.30) times less likely to hang out with friends in the last week, 1.49 (95 percent CI: 1.12, 1.98) times more likely to report serious emotional problems in the last year, 1.79 (95 percent CI: 1.20, 2.65) times more likely to report hopelessness, and 1.73 (95 percent CI: 1.21, 1.98) times more likely to report a suicide attempt in the last year.

Obese girls were also 1.51 (95 percent CI: 1.09, 2.10) times more likely to report being held back a grade and 2.09 (95 percent CI: 1.35, 3.24) times more likely to consider themselves poor students compared with average weight girls.

Compared with their average weight counterparts, obese boys were 1.91 (95 percent CI: 1.43, 2.54) times less likely to hang out with friends in the last week, 1.34 (95 percent CI: 1.06, 1.70) times more likely to feel that their friends do not care about them, 1.38 (95 percent CI: 1.08, 1.76) times more likely to report having serious problems in the last year, 1.46 (95 percent CI: 1.05, 0.03) times more likely to consider themselves poor students, and 2.18 (95 percent CI: 1.45, 3.30) times more likely to expect to quit school. Compared with average weight boys, underweight boys were 1.67 (95 percent CI: 1.30, 2.13) times more likely to report hanging out with friends in the last week, 1.22 (95 percent CI: 1.01, 1.49) times more likely to report disliking school, and 1.40 (95 percent CI: 1.06, 1.86) times more likely to consider themselves poor students.

Obesity Behavior Study - Issues
Associations of weight status with social relationships, school experiences, psychological well-being, and some future aspirations were observed. Among girls, the pattern of observations indicates that obese girls reported more adverse social, educational, and psychological correlates. Obese as well as underweight boys also reported some adverse social and educational correlates. These findings contribute to an understanding of how adolescent experiences vary by weight status and suggest social and psychological risks associated with not meeting weight and body shape ideals embedded in the larger culture.

Source: Division of Epidemiology, University of Minnesota. 2001

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Weight Loss & Obesity Reduction
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