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Sex differences in body satisfaction, feeling fat and pressure to diet among Chinese adolescents in Hong Kong

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This study examines body size, body satisfaction (BodSat), feelings of fatness (FeelFat) and pressure to diet (PressDiet) in 356 non-referred Hong Kong Chinese adolescents. The primary interest was to elucidate the mechanisms that increase risk for girls to translate their dissatisfaction with their bodies into weight restriction efforts.


Secondary school boys (n = 192) and girls (n = 164) completed selected scales of the Body Attitudes Questionnaire with measures for BodSat, FeelFat and PressDiet. Body mass index (BMI) was calculated based on current weight and height.


As predicted, the association between FeelFat and PressDiet was stronger in girls than boys. FeelFat mediated the effect of BodSat and BMI on PressDiet in girls. In contrast, in boys, BMI influenced PressDiet independently of FeelFat.


These findings suggest that the effect of BMI on PressDiet may be a protective factor against eating pathology in boys. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Community Medicine, The University of Hong Kong 2: Department of Psychiatry, UT Southwestern Medical School, Dallas, TX, USA

Publication date: 2002-09-01

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