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J Occup Health. 2007 Sep;49(5):376-81.

Degree of agreement between weight perception and body mass index of Japanese workers: MY Health Up Study.

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  • 1Department of Public Health, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Tokyo, Japan.


The objective of this study was to assess the degree of agreement between body mass index (BMI) and weight perception of Japanese office workers between the ages of 20 and 65. We sent 43,064 self-administered health-related questionnaires to all employees of a financial firm in Japan in October 2004. The questionnaire asked the respondents for their height, weight, and their weight perception. The kappa coefficient was calculated to investigate the degree of agreement between the BMI calculated using the self-reported data and weight perception for three categories. Of the questionnaires, 34,921 (81.1%) were returned and 33,514 responses (77.8%) were used for the analysis. Based on Japanese obesity criteria, 2,202 men (31.2%) and 5,145 women (19.5%) were obese; and 179 men (2.5%) and 2,769 women (10.5%) were underweight. The kappa coefficient was 0.374 for men and 0.297 for women. The kappa coefficients for different age groups-twenties, thirties, forties, fifties, and sixties (up to 65)-were respectively as follows: 0.315, 0.355, 0.374, 0.406, and 0.425 for men; and 0.194, 0.275, 0.285, 0.334, and 0.355 for women. In conclusion, the degree of agreement between BMI and weight perception differed by age and sex. The degree of agreement was smaller among women than among men and the degree of agreement among younger women was weaker than among older women.

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