Social Mechanisms for Weight-related Behaviors among Emerging Adults
Objective: The purpose of this research was to assess young people's perceptions about how friends impact eating and physical activity (PA) behaviors. Methods: Emerging adults (N = 52; Mean age = 18.7±0.6 years; 50% female) attending a large 4-year college campus in the southwestern United States were enrolled in focus groups (N = 10). Following saturation, the research team met to establish consensus and co-create a codebook from which 2 researchers independently coded each focus group. Coders continually discussed themes to ensure consistency of coding. Results: Initially, youth reported that their friends did not influence their eating/PA. The major social facilitators identified by students were encouragement, social cues, celebrations, shared experiences, pressure. Conclusion: Several social facilitators impacted eating and PA. These factors should be considered when designing obesity interventions with emerging adults.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: September 1, 2017
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