Date Approved

5-7-2009

Embargo Period

3-17-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in School Psychology

Department

Educational Services and Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Dihoff, Roberta

Subject(s)

Obesity--New Jersey--Psychological aspects; Overweight children--New Jersey

Disciplines

Educational Psychology

Abstract

The prevalence of obesity in the United States can be considered alarming, given its dramatic increase over the past twenty years. A large percentage of the obese population suffers from both medical and psychological side effects. This study focused on how non-obese and obese individuals perceive one's own body. Based on research, it was hypothesized that obese individuals are more likely than non-obese individuals to perceive one's body negatively. It was also hypothesized that obese individuals who suffer from childhood onset obesity as opposed to adult onset obesity are more likely to perceive one's body negatively. Participants were recruited from a medical office located in a middle-upper class suburban town of South Jersey. Body shape attitudes were attained through the Body Shape Questionnaire. Through a One-Way ANOVA, it was found that non-obese females view their bodies more favorably than obese females. No significant results were found to support a relationship between childhood and adult onset obesity.

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