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ERIC Number: EJ1095892
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Apr
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1090-1981
Ideal Body Size as a Mediator for the Gender-Specific Association between Socioeconomic Status and Body Mass Index: Evidence from an Upper-Middle-Income Country in the African Region
Yepes, Maryam; Maurer, Jürgen; Stringhini, Silvia; Viswanathan, Barathi; Gedeon, Jude; Bovet, Pascal
Health Education & Behavior, v43 n1 suppl p56S-63S Apr 2016
Background: While obesity continues to rise globally, the associations between body size, gender, and socioeconomic status (SES) seem to vary in different populations, and little is known on the contribution of perceived ideal body size in the social disparity of obesity in African countries. Purpose: We examined the gender and socioeconomic patterns of body mass index (BMI) and perceived ideal body size in the Seychelles, a middle-income small island state in the African region. We also assessed the potential role of perceived ideal body size as a mediator for the gender-specific association between SES and BMI. Method: A population-based survey of 1,240 adults aged 25 to 64 years conducted in December 2013. Participants' BMI was calculated based on measured weight and height; ideal body size was assessed using a nine-silhouette instrument. Three SES indicators were considered: income, education, and occupation. Results: BMI and perceived ideal body size were both higher among men of higher versus lower SES (p < 0.001) but lower among women of higher versus lower SES (p < 0.001), irrespective of the SES indicator used. Multivariate analysis showed a strong and direct association between perceived ideal body size and BMI in both men and women (p < 0.001) and was consistent with a potential mediating role of perceived ideal body size in the gender-specific associations between SES and BMI. Conclusion: Our study emphasizes the importance of gender and socioeconomic differences in BMI and ideal body size and suggests that public health interventions that promote perception of healthy weight could help mitigate SES-related disparities in BMI.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (DHHS/NIH)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Seychelles
Grant or Contract Numbers: HHSN268201500073P