Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Ideal Weight Varies Across Cultures, But Body Image Dissatisfaction Pervades

Date:
October 24, 2007
Source:
Temple University
Summary:
While different cultures celebrate different body types, researchers have found that despite their background, school age children who are overweight or obese are still unhappy with their body image. "Culturally speaking, the ideal body shape is a lean one among Asian children," according to researchers. "In African-American and Latino cultures, being lean is not always the ideal."

Different cultures have different standards and norms for appropriate body size and shape, which can effect how children perceive their body image. Some cultures celebrate a fuller body shape more than others, but researchers at the Center for Obesity Research and Education (CORE) at Temple University have found that an overweight or obese child can still be unhappy with his or her body, despite acceptance from within their ethnic group.

"This unhappiness is yet another consequence of childhood obesity," said Gary Foster, Ph.D., director of CORE and president-elect of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity. "These data illustrate when treating overweight children, it's important to attend the psychological consequences that excess weight confers, no matter what the ethnic group."

Researchers looked at data collected from 1,200 fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-graders in 10 Philadelphia schools to determine the level of satisfaction each student had with his or her body image. After students answered a questionnaire to determine how satisfied they were with their bodies, the data were analyzed, taking into account race/ethnicity, gender and weight.

The findings will be presented at The North American Association for the Study of Obesity's 2007 Annual Scientific Meeting in New Orleans on Oct. 23. Among them: While obese and overweight children of all ethnicities were unsatisfied with their body image, Asian children had the highest levels of dissatisfaction among all ethnic groups tested.

"Culturally speaking, the ideal body shape is a lean one among Asian children," said Foster. "In African-American and Latino cultures, being lean is not always the ideal."

Most current studies on body image look at perceptions across one or two groups, mainly among Caucasians and African-Americans. But Foster noted that this study provides a rich sampling for a better understanding of how body image is perceived across different ethnic backgrounds.

Other authors are Melissa Xanthopoulos, Kelley Borradaile, Sandy Sherman, Stephanie Vander Veur, Karen Grundy and Joan Nachmani. Funding was provided by a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Temple University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Temple University. "Ideal Weight Varies Across Cultures, But Body Image Dissatisfaction Pervades." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071023164042.htm>.
Temple University. (2007, October 24). Ideal Weight Varies Across Cultures, But Body Image Dissatisfaction Pervades. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071023164042.htm
Temple University. "Ideal Weight Varies Across Cultures, But Body Image Dissatisfaction Pervades." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071023164042.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins