OBJECTIVE: Obesity is a critical public health condition affecting Latinx adolescents and contributes to health disparities across the lifespan. Childhood and adolescent obesity is associated with reduced quality of life (QoL) and decreased self-esteem. The purpose of this study is to examine the role of cultural (e.g., familism) and psychosocial (e.g., self-esteem) factors as predictors of weight-specific QoL among Latinx adolescents with obesity. METHODS: Baseline data from 160 Latinx adolescents (ages 14-16 years) with obesity (BMI > 95th percentile for age and sex) who were recruited for a diabetes prevention intervention were used. Structural equation modeling tested the relationships between four latent constructs (familism, positive self-esteem, self-deprecation, and weight-specific QoL). RESULTS: The model tested paths from familism to positive self-esteem, self-deprecation, and weight-specific QoL, and paths from positive self-esteem and self-deprecation to weight-specific QoL. Higher familism was positively associated with positive self-esteem but not self-deprecation. In turn, positive self-esteem was positively associated with higher weight-specific QoL, whereas self-deprecation was negatively associated. Furthermore, there was an indirect effect of familism on QoL via positive self-esteem. CONCLUSIONS: These data shed light into specific cultural and psychosocial constructs that influence QoL among Latinx adolescents with obesity. This study suggests that familism and positive self-esteem can operate as protective factors associated with higher weight-specific QoL in Latinx adolescents with obesity; whereas self-deprecation may operate as a risk factor for lower weight-specific QoL.
- Latinx adolescents
- quality of life
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Developmental and Educational Psychology