UK adults' implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity: a cross-sectional study

Stuart W Flint, Joanne Hudson, David Lavallee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)
8 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Anti-fat attitudes may lead to stigmatisation of and lowered self-esteem in obese people. Examining anti-fat attitudes is warranted given that there is an association with anti-fat behaviours. Previous studies, mainly outside the UK, have demonstrated that anti-fat attitudes are increasing over time.

METHODS: The study was cross-sectional with a sample of 2380 participants (74.2 % female; aged 18-65 years). In an online survey participants reported demographic characteristics and completed a range of implicit and explicit measures of obesity related attitudes.

RESULTS: Perceptions of obesity were more negative than reported in previously. Main effects indicated more negative perceptions in males, younger respondents and more frequent exercisers. Attitudes about obesity differed in relation to weight category, and in general were more positive in obese than non-obese respondents.

CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study to demonstrate anti-fat attitudes across different sections of the UK population. As such, this study provides the first indication of the prevalence of anti-fat attitudes in UK adults. Interventions to modify these attitudes could target specific groups of individuals with more negative perceptions as identified here. Future work would be useful that increases understanding of both implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalObesity
Volume2
Issue number31
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Obesity
Cross-Sectional Studies
Fats
Stereotyping
Self Concept
Demography
Weights and Measures
Population
Surveys and Questionnaires

Cite this

@article{f5617af9430643a99082e09dd3f0920d,
title = "UK adults' implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity: a cross-sectional study",
abstract = "BACKGROUND: Anti-fat attitudes may lead to stigmatisation of and lowered self-esteem in obese people. Examining anti-fat attitudes is warranted given that there is an association with anti-fat behaviours. Previous studies, mainly outside the UK, have demonstrated that anti-fat attitudes are increasing over time.METHODS: The study was cross-sectional with a sample of 2380 participants (74.2 {\%} female; aged 18-65 years). In an online survey participants reported demographic characteristics and completed a range of implicit and explicit measures of obesity related attitudes.RESULTS: Perceptions of obesity were more negative than reported in previously. Main effects indicated more negative perceptions in males, younger respondents and more frequent exercisers. Attitudes about obesity differed in relation to weight category, and in general were more positive in obese than non-obese respondents.CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study to demonstrate anti-fat attitudes across different sections of the UK population. As such, this study provides the first indication of the prevalence of anti-fat attitudes in UK adults. Interventions to modify these attitudes could target specific groups of individuals with more negative perceptions as identified here. Future work would be useful that increases understanding of both implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity.",
author = "Flint, {Stuart W} and Joanne Hudson and David Lavallee",
year = "2015",
month = "9",
day = "4",
doi = "10.1186/s40608-015-0064-2",
language = "English",
volume = "2",
journal = "Obesity Research",
issn = "1930-7381",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "31",

}

UK adults' implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity : a cross-sectional study. / Flint, Stuart W; Hudson, Joanne; Lavallee, David.

In: Obesity, Vol. 2, No. 31, 04.09.2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - UK adults' implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity

T2 - a cross-sectional study

AU - Flint, Stuart W

AU - Hudson, Joanne

AU - Lavallee, David

PY - 2015/9/4

Y1 - 2015/9/4

N2 - BACKGROUND: Anti-fat attitudes may lead to stigmatisation of and lowered self-esteem in obese people. Examining anti-fat attitudes is warranted given that there is an association with anti-fat behaviours. Previous studies, mainly outside the UK, have demonstrated that anti-fat attitudes are increasing over time.METHODS: The study was cross-sectional with a sample of 2380 participants (74.2 % female; aged 18-65 years). In an online survey participants reported demographic characteristics and completed a range of implicit and explicit measures of obesity related attitudes.RESULTS: Perceptions of obesity were more negative than reported in previously. Main effects indicated more negative perceptions in males, younger respondents and more frequent exercisers. Attitudes about obesity differed in relation to weight category, and in general were more positive in obese than non-obese respondents.CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study to demonstrate anti-fat attitudes across different sections of the UK population. As such, this study provides the first indication of the prevalence of anti-fat attitudes in UK adults. Interventions to modify these attitudes could target specific groups of individuals with more negative perceptions as identified here. Future work would be useful that increases understanding of both implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity.

AB - BACKGROUND: Anti-fat attitudes may lead to stigmatisation of and lowered self-esteem in obese people. Examining anti-fat attitudes is warranted given that there is an association with anti-fat behaviours. Previous studies, mainly outside the UK, have demonstrated that anti-fat attitudes are increasing over time.METHODS: The study was cross-sectional with a sample of 2380 participants (74.2 % female; aged 18-65 years). In an online survey participants reported demographic characteristics and completed a range of implicit and explicit measures of obesity related attitudes.RESULTS: Perceptions of obesity were more negative than reported in previously. Main effects indicated more negative perceptions in males, younger respondents and more frequent exercisers. Attitudes about obesity differed in relation to weight category, and in general were more positive in obese than non-obese respondents.CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study to demonstrate anti-fat attitudes across different sections of the UK population. As such, this study provides the first indication of the prevalence of anti-fat attitudes in UK adults. Interventions to modify these attitudes could target specific groups of individuals with more negative perceptions as identified here. Future work would be useful that increases understanding of both implicit and explicit attitudes towards obesity.

U2 - 10.1186/s40608-015-0064-2

DO - 10.1186/s40608-015-0064-2

M3 - Article

C2 - 26351567

VL - 2

JO - Obesity Research

JF - Obesity Research

SN - 1930-7381

IS - 31

ER -