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Overweight, Body Image, and Depression in Asian and Hispanic Adolescents

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Objectives : To prospectively investigate associations between overweight and depressive symptoms in Asian and Hispanic adolescents.

Methods : Data included 780 Hispanic and 375 Asian students. Structural equation model was used to prospectively explore moderation effects of gender, ethnicity, and acculturation on associations of overweight, body image dissatisfaction, and depressive symptoms.

Results : Significant mediation effect was found only in Asian girls (mediation effect 0.16, P < 0.05) and girls with high acculturation (mediation effect 0.17, P < 0.05). Overweight significantly predicted higher body image dissatisfaction, which in turn was significantly related to depressive symptoms.

Conclusions : Our findings help understanding the association of overweight and experience of depressive symptoms.

Keywords: acculturation; body image; depressive symptoms; overweight

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1 Associate Professor, School of Community and Global Health, Claremont Graduate University, San Dimas, CA.

Publication date: 2010-07-01

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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