Overweight status and psychological well-being in adolescent boys and girls: a multilevel analysis

Gray, L. and Leyland, A. (2008) Overweight status and psychological well-being in adolescent boys and girls: a multilevel analysis. European Journal of Public Health, 18(6), pp. 616-621. (doi: 10.1093/eurpub/ckn044)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/ckn044


<br>Background: Psychological distress and high body mass index (BMI) are linked in adults, especially in females. Effects of social position and behaviour, and whether obesogenic environments affect adolescents and adults equally are unresolved. The aim was to examine associations between psychological distress and being overweight in adolescents, by sex, accounting for social, lifestyle and contextual factors. Correlation of area-level variation in overweight status in adolescents and adults was investigated.</br> <br>Methods: Height, weight, General Health Questionnaire 12 (GHQ12) of psychological distress, physical activity, smoking, alcohol consumption, area deprivation and social class were available on 635 male and 618 female adolescents (13–15 years) from two cross-sectional population health surveys conducted in Scotland in 1998–99/2003–04. Multilevel logistic regression modelled overweight (including obese) status accounting for intraclass correlation of adolescents in households within postcode sector areas in health board regions. Univariable analysis examined effects of high (4 or more) GHQ12 score; multivariable analysis further allowed for covariates. Adult data were used to assess the importance of correlation between adolescent and adult area-level variation.</br> <br>Results: Univariably, there was significantly increased risk of being overweight associated with high GHQ12 score for girls but not boys; adolescent and adult area-level variation correlation did not impact. Results remained significant for girls in multivariable analyses (OR = 2.44, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.33–4.50) and non-significant for boys (OR = 1.31, 95% CI: 0.56–3.05).</br> <br>Conclusions: Findings indicate being overweight is associated with psychological distress in adolescent girls, but not boys. Effects are not mediated by social, lifestyle or contextual factors.</br>

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gray, Dr Linsay and Leyland, Professor Alastair
Authors: Gray, L., and Leyland, A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:European Journal of Public Health
ISSN (Online):1464-360X
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2008 The Authors
First Published:First published in European Journal of Public Health 18(6):616-621
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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