Men are in denial about obesity

April 14th, 2008 - 1:53 pm ICT by admin  

Sydney, April 14 (IANS) A survey of obese people has thrown up interesting facts - almost half of the males are in complete denial while only about a third concede they were overweight or obese. Based on a survey of 34,000 people, the study found that men from lower economic strata were even more likely to discount risks associated with rotund bellies.

The study found 37.4 percent of women were overweight, but 42.8 percent thought of themselves as such. In other words women were more likely to admit carrying extra kilos - even when they weren’t.

This trend was evident among well-off, well-educated women, who were at increased risk of developing body image problems and eating disorders. On the other hand, men tended to underestimate their weight.

The study, conducted by said Kartina Giskes of Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and her team, has been published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health.

“Kidding yourself you’re lighter than you are, for example, makes it easier to ignore public health campaigns encouraging healthier food and more active lifestyles,” said Giskes.

“There are some psychological benefits to positive perceptions of weight status, but the risks associated with incorrect perceptions cannot be ignored,” she added.

Overweight and obesity are key risk factors for the leading causes of death in developed societies.

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