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Body Image. 2018 Jun;25:168-176. doi: 10.1016/j.bodyim.2018.04.003. Epub 2018 Apr 17.

Relating shape/weight based self-esteem, depression, and anxiety with weight and perceived physical health among young adults.

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Department of Psychology, The University of Memphis, United States; Yale University Child Study Center, United States. Electronic address:
Department of Psychology, The University of Memphis, United States; University of Tennessee Health Science Center, United States; Le Bonheur Children's Foundation Research Institute, United States.
Department of Psychology, The University of Memphis, United States.
School of Public Health, University of Michigan, United States.
Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital/Harvard Medical School, United States.


Simultaneous contributions of self-esteem, depression, and anxiety to weight and perceived physical health in young adults is understudied. A diverse sample of 424 young adults completed measures of shape/weight based self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and perceived physical health. Height and weight were measured to calculate body mass index (BMI). Latent profile analysis was conducted to derive patterns of depression, anxiety, and shape/weight based self-esteem. Then, we examined the association of the profiles with weight status and perceived physical health. Three profiles emerged: (1) High Shape/Weight Influence (HSWI); (2) Low Shape/Weight, Depression, & Anxiety Influence (LSWDAI); and (3) High Depression & Anxiety Influence (HDAI). The HSWI profile had significantly higher BMI than the LSWDAI and HDAI profiles, and significantly lower perceived physical health than the LSWDAI profile. Over emphasis on shape/weight, regardless of depression and anxiety, is associated with elevated weight and negative internalized health views.


Anxiety; BMI; Depression; Self-esteem; Weight and shape concerns; Young adults

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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