Title

Flourishing and Academic Engagement Among Adolescents With Overweight and Obesity

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-29-2018

School

Kinesiology and Nutrition

Abstract

Background: Overweight and obesity in adolescence are associated with several negative health indicators; the association with flourishing, an indicator of overall well-being, is less clear.

Objectives: To examine associations between weight status and indicators of flourishing and academic engagement in adolescents.

Subjects: Analyses included 22,078 adolescents (10–17 years) from the 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health.

Methods: Adolescents were grouped according to body mass index (BMI) classification; outcomes included indicators of flourishing and academic engagement. Logistic regression models assessed the odds of each outcome comparing adolescents with overweight and adolescents with obesity to healthy weight adolescents.

Results: For flourishing, adolescents with overweight and adolescents with obesity were less likely to stay calm during a challenge (17% and 30%, respectively; p < 0.01); adolescents with obesity were 30% less likely to finish a task they started (p < 0.001), and 34% less likely to show interest in new things (p < 0.001) in comparison to healthy weight peers. Adolescents with obesity were 26% less likely to care about doing well in school (p < 0.001), and adolescents with overweight and adolescents with obesity were significantly less likely to complete all required homework (19% and 34%, respectively) (p < 0.001), in comparison to healthy weight peers.

Conclusions: A comprehensive approach to addressing overweight and obesity in adolescence should target improving academic engagement and flourishing to promote overall well-being.

Publication Title

International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health

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