Overweight women, men dont want to be thin enough

November 21st, 2007 - 3:20 pm ICT by admin  

Washington, November 21 (ANI): A Cornell study has revealed that most normal-weight and underweight women yearn to lose more weight, but another finding of the same study is that most overweight women just do not have any urge to be thin enough to achieve a healthy weight.

Published in the journal Eating Behaviors, the study revealed that 78 per cent of the overweight males surveyed also wished to weigh less.

However, 59 per cent of such people did not want to shed enough pounds, which is why the body weight they desired would still keep them overweight.

Dr. Lori Neighbors revealed that more than 60 per cent of US adults are considered overweight or obese.

“Because they don’t meet the societal ideals propagated by the media and advertising for body weight, they are often targets of discrimination within educational, workplace and health-care settings and are stigmatised as lazy, lacking self-discipline and unmotivated,” Dr. Neighbors said.

The researcher further said that such factors were causing many people to be dissatisfied with their bodies.

During the study, the researchers assessed the subjects body weight as against the weight and shape people wished they had.

It was found that men and women were similarly dissatisfied with the weight by an average of about 8 pounds, though women were much more dissatisfied with their bodies.

Most of the normal-weight women who wanted to weigh less desired a weight still within the normal-weight range. However, 10 percent of such women wanted to weigh what is officially regarded as underweight.

Half of the underweight women said that they wanted to stay the same or lose weight.

“The majority of underweight females, closer in body size to the thin cultural ideal, consider their body weight ‘about right,’” said Professor Jeffery Sobal of Cornell’s College of Human Ecology, even though this weight tread is officially considered to be unhealthy.

While overweight women said that they wished they weighed less, about half of them wanted a body that would continue to keep them overweight.

The researchers said that their findings suggested that “the idealized body weight and shape, especially among underweight females and overweight individuals of both genders, are not in accordance with population-based standards defining healthy body weight.”

In a society wherein excess weight is the norm, according to the researchers, it is vital to understand body dissatisfaction and how this dissatisfaction impacts weight-management efforts.

“While both men and women express some degree of body dissatisfaction, a surprising proportion of people with less healthy body weights — underweight females and overweight individuals of both genders — do not idealize a body weight that would move them to a more healthy state,” said Neighbors. (ANI)

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