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Relation between body mass index and self esteem in adolescents

Author: 
Abdullah D. Al-shehri, Tariq A. Aljuaid, Bassam A. Alzaid, Hassan D. Alasmari and Khaled A. Alswat
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Background: World Health Organization (WHO) has to designate obesity as one of the most important public health menace. Studies suggested that overweight in adolescents has been associated with negative body image. Method: A cross-sectional study was used that includes students from secondary and high schools located in Taif city, Saudi Arabia. It was conducted between March 2014 and June 2015. Height and weight were measured and BMI was calculated from this data. Related risk factors including the dietary and physical habits, school type, parent’s education, living situation, sleeping pattern, and smoking were recorded. The primary aim of the study is to assess the relationship between BMI and self-esteem using Rosenberg self-esteem scale. Result: A total of 488 students with a mean age of 15.2 year (SD 1.75), 79.7% were male, 58% were secondary school students, and 85.5% were attended public schools. The mean Rosenberg self-esteem scale (RSES) score is 20.35 (SD 4.1) with 10.8% categorized as high self-esteem, 82.6% as normal self-esteem and 6.6% as low self-esteem. 6.6% of the students scored < 14 in the RSES and were considered to have low self-esteem, those with normal/high self-esteem tends to be non-significantly younger, have higher BMI, larger waist circumference, more likely to be overweight/obese, and were more likely to reports healthy lifestyle related habits. Non-significant positive partial correlation between RSES and both BMI (r 0.53, p 0.173) and waist circumference (r 0.074, p 0.094). Conclusion: There was no significant correlation between BMI and self-esteem. Although, students who are underweight were more likely to be in the low self-esteem group.Positive partial correlation between RSES and smoking were noted.

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