Young women often fail to spot weight gain

January 11th, 2012 - 3:38 pm ICT by IANS  

Texas, Jan 11 (IANS) Young women fail to recognize weight gain which may be as much as 5 kg, putting them at risk for cardiovascular disease and other obesity-related conditions.

Self-perception of weight gain also appears to be significantly influenced by race, ethnicity and contraceptive methods.

Researchers from the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) found that a significant number of women evaluated at six months intervals did not recognize recent gains in weight, the Journal of Women’s Heath reports.

Overall, nearly one-third and one-quarter of women did not recognize gains of approximately 2 and 4 kg during a six-month interval, respectively, according to a Texas statement.

However, DMPA users (depot medroxyprogesterone acetate, commonly known as the birth control shot) were more likely to recognize weight gain than their counterparts.

Researchers surveyed a sample of 466 women with an average age of 25. Approximately 37 percent of the subjects were Hispanic, 35 percent non-Hispanic white and 29 percent non-Hispanic black women.

Roughly 39 percent of the women used DMPA, 36 percent used an oral contraceptive and 25 percent were users of non-hormonal contraceptives.

Every six months over 36 months the women completed a symptom checklist that included questions on whether they felt they had gained weight.

“We were surprised to find that race and ethnicity are determinants of accurate recognition of weight gain, predictors that have never before been reported,” said Mahbubur Rahman, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynaecology.

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