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Body Image. 2011 Jan;8(1):12-9. doi: 10.1016/j.bodyim.2010.11.002. Epub 2010 Dec 15.

Weight comments by family and significant others in young adulthood.

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Division of Adolescent Health and Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota, 717 Delaware St. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA.


Weight teasing is common among adolescents, but less is known about the continuation of this experience during young adulthood. The present study uses survey data from a diverse sample of 2287 young adults, who participated in a 10-year longitudinal study of weight-related issues to examine hurtful weight comments by family members or a significant other. Among young adults, 35.9% of females and 22.8% of males reported receiving hurtful weight-related comments by family members, and 21.2% of females and 23.8% of males with a significant other had received hurtful weight-related comments from this source. Hispanic and Asian young adults and overweight/obese young adults were more likely to report receiving comments than those in other groups. Weight teasing during adolescence predicted hurtful weight-related comments in young adulthood, with some differences by gender. Findings suggest that hurtful weight talk continues into young adulthood and is predicted by earlier weight teasing experiences.

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