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Jeers of peers may affect adolescent adjustment
Date:8/6/2008

lso keep the pathway intact because it is also a risk factor for being victimized," Adams states in the report.

Using data from Statistics Canada (Canada's national statistical agency), the researchers randomly selected Canadian children identified through the National Longitudinal Survey for Children and Youth and gathered self-report data from 1,287 participants over three different time periods, including when the children were 12-13 years old, 14-15 years old and 16-17 years old. To determine if children were being victimized by peers, they were asked whether children said nasty things to them at school, whether they felt bullied at school, or if they were bullied on the way to or home from school. To examine feelings about their physical appearance, the children were asked whether they liked the way they looked. To check body mass index over the three time periods, the children were asked to report their weight and height. Body Mass Index (BMI) was then calculated for males and females, and obesity was determined based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's growth charts.

"The current study suggests that a risk-factor for being victimized, such as obesity, may play an important role in the long-term effects of victimization by making it more likely that the adolescent will be victimized over the long term, but also that victimization can reinforce the negative self-perceptions that the adolescent already has," Adams states in the study. "It is important to go beyond using obesity as a predictor of long-term adjustment and examine the processes and experiences of obese individuals that might cause depression or changes in health."


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Contact: Dawn Fuller
dawn.fuller@uc.edu
513-556-1823
University of Cincinnati
Source:Eurekalert

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