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Research Article Open Access
Objective: Though overweight/obesity has been reported by several authors in Nigeria, weight misperception and dissatisfaction has been scarcely studied and reported. The prevalence of overweight/obesity, weight misperception and dissatisfaction was therefore investigated in 1,030 students (51% females) of a Nigerian tertiary school.
Methods: Self-reported age and perception of each subject’s weight status and weight preference were recorded. Anthropometric data were collected using standard protocol and body mass index (BMI) calculated. Appropriate statistical tools were used for data analyses.
Results: A total of 21.2% (22.0% males; 20.4% females) of the population were overweight/obese; while 2.3% (1.6% males, 3.1% females) were thin. Weight misperception was found in 33.4% (33.3% females; 33.6% males) of the population while 23.8% (23.9% females; 23.8% males) had body weight dissatisfaction (BWD). Almost all (99%) of the overweight subjects, and 0.8% of the normal weight subjects, had BWD. There were no significant differences (P>0.05) in prevalence between the sexes.
Conclusion: Weight misperception and dissatisfaction are prevalent in this predominantly lean population. This is worrisome because affected subjects may adopt inappropriate weight-loss habits leading to possible deleterious consequences.
Body shape dissatisfaction, Obesity, Prevalence, Weight misperception, Body shape dissatisfaction, Obesity, Prevalence, Weight misperception