Psychosocial Variables and Self-Rated Health in Young Adult Obese Women

AIM: The aim of this study is to describe relationships among self-rated health, stress, sleep quality, loneliness, and self-esteem, in obese young adult women.

BACKGROUND: Obesity has steadily increased among young adults and is a major predictor of self-rated health.

METHODS: A sample of 68 obese (BMI 30 or higher, mean 35), young (18-34 years, mean 22) adult women were recruited from a health center. Survey data were gathered and analyzed using descriptive and bivariate procedures to assess relationships and group differences.

RESULTS: Scores reflected stress, loneliness, poor sleep quality, and poor self-esteem. There were positive correlations among stress, loneliness, and sleep quality and, a high inverse correlation between loneliness and self-esteem. Those who ranked their health as poor differed on stress, loneliness, and self-esteem when compared to those with rankings of good/very good.

CONCLUSIONS: Assessing and addressing stress, loneliness, sleep quality and self-esteem could lead to improved health outcomes in obese young women.