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J Consult Clin Psychol. 2005 Apr;73(2):195-202.

Psychological and behavioral risk factors for obesity onset in adolescent girls: a prospective study.

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Department of Psychology, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA.


Because little is known about risk factors for obesity, the authors tested whether certain psychological and behavioral variables predicted future onset of obesity. The authors used data from a prospective study of 496 adolescent girls who completed a baseline assessment at age 11-15 years and 4 annual follow-ups. Self-reported dietary restraint, radical weight-control behaviors, depressive symptoms, and perceived parental obesity--but not high-fat food consumption, binge eating, or exercise frequency-predicted obesity onset. Results provide support for certain etiologic theories of obesity, including the affect regulation model. The fact that self-reported, weight-control behaviors identified girls at risk for obesity implies that high-risk youths are not engaging in effective weight-control methods and suggests the need to promote more effective strategies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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