Weight shame, social connection, and depressive symptoms in late adolescence

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Child and adolescent obesity is increasingly the focus of interventions, because it predicts serious disease morbidity later in life. However, social environments that permit weight-related stigma and body shame may make weight control and loss more difficult. Rarely do youth obesity interventions address these complexities. Drawing on repeated measures in a large sample (N = 1443) of first-year (freshman), campus-resident university students across a nine-month period, we model how weight-related shame predicts depressive symptom levels, how being overweight (assessed by anthropometric measures) shapes that risk, and how social connection (openness to friendship) might mediate/moderate. Body shame directly, clearly, and repeatedly predicts depression symptom levels across the whole school year for all students, but overweight youth have significantly elevated risk. Social connections mediate earlier in the school year, and in all phases moderate, body shame effects on depression. Youth obesity interventions would be well-served recognizing and incorporating the influential roles of social-environmental factors like weight stigma and friendship in program design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number891
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume15
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2018

Fingerprint

Shame
Depression
Weights and Measures
Pediatric Obesity
Obesity
Students
Social Environment
Weight Loss
Morbidity

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • Depression
  • Friendship
  • Intervention
  • Obesity
  • Peers
  • Shame
  • Stigma
  • Weight

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

Cite this

@article{16c48c02d1fa4f4ca94598bb00b8197b,
title = "Weight shame, social connection, and depressive symptoms in late adolescence",
abstract = "Child and adolescent obesity is increasingly the focus of interventions, because it predicts serious disease morbidity later in life. However, social environments that permit weight-related stigma and body shame may make weight control and loss more difficult. Rarely do youth obesity interventions address these complexities. Drawing on repeated measures in a large sample (N = 1443) of first-year (freshman), campus-resident university students across a nine-month period, we model how weight-related shame predicts depressive symptom levels, how being overweight (assessed by anthropometric measures) shapes that risk, and how social connection (openness to friendship) might mediate/moderate. Body shame directly, clearly, and repeatedly predicts depression symptom levels across the whole school year for all students, but overweight youth have significantly elevated risk. Social connections mediate earlier in the school year, and in all phases moderate, body shame effects on depression. Youth obesity interventions would be well-served recognizing and incorporating the influential roles of social-environmental factors like weight stigma and friendship in program design.",
keywords = "Adolescents, Depression, Friendship, Intervention, Obesity, Peers, Shame, Stigma, Weight",
author = "Alexandra Slade and Meredith Bruening",
year = "2018",
month = "5",
day = "1",
doi = "10.3390/ijerph15050891",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "15",
journal = "International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health",
issn = "1661-7827",
publisher = "Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI)",
number = "5",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Weight shame, social connection, and depressive symptoms in late adolescence

AU - Slade, Alexandra

AU - Bruening, Meredith

PY - 2018/5/1

Y1 - 2018/5/1

N2 - Child and adolescent obesity is increasingly the focus of interventions, because it predicts serious disease morbidity later in life. However, social environments that permit weight-related stigma and body shame may make weight control and loss more difficult. Rarely do youth obesity interventions address these complexities. Drawing on repeated measures in a large sample (N = 1443) of first-year (freshman), campus-resident university students across a nine-month period, we model how weight-related shame predicts depressive symptom levels, how being overweight (assessed by anthropometric measures) shapes that risk, and how social connection (openness to friendship) might mediate/moderate. Body shame directly, clearly, and repeatedly predicts depression symptom levels across the whole school year for all students, but overweight youth have significantly elevated risk. Social connections mediate earlier in the school year, and in all phases moderate, body shame effects on depression. Youth obesity interventions would be well-served recognizing and incorporating the influential roles of social-environmental factors like weight stigma and friendship in program design.

AB - Child and adolescent obesity is increasingly the focus of interventions, because it predicts serious disease morbidity later in life. However, social environments that permit weight-related stigma and body shame may make weight control and loss more difficult. Rarely do youth obesity interventions address these complexities. Drawing on repeated measures in a large sample (N = 1443) of first-year (freshman), campus-resident university students across a nine-month period, we model how weight-related shame predicts depressive symptom levels, how being overweight (assessed by anthropometric measures) shapes that risk, and how social connection (openness to friendship) might mediate/moderate. Body shame directly, clearly, and repeatedly predicts depression symptom levels across the whole school year for all students, but overweight youth have significantly elevated risk. Social connections mediate earlier in the school year, and in all phases moderate, body shame effects on depression. Youth obesity interventions would be well-served recognizing and incorporating the influential roles of social-environmental factors like weight stigma and friendship in program design.

KW - Adolescents

KW - Depression

KW - Friendship

KW - Intervention

KW - Obesity

KW - Peers

KW - Shame

KW - Stigma

KW - Weight

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85046361385&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85046361385&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.3390/ijerph15050891

DO - 10.3390/ijerph15050891

M3 - Article

VL - 15

JO - International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

JF - International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

SN - 1661-7827

IS - 5

M1 - 891

ER -