Some African-American Women and Their Doctors Are Not Jiving On Obesity

personal trainer overweight woman

African-American women suffer from obesity at a rate significantly higher than most other groups. That’s partly for standard, depressing reasons of socioeconomic disadvantage, but for a while researchers have also known that, on average, African-American women view their bodies in a different light than members of other groups.

As the authors of a new study in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior explain, “[o]verweight and obese African American women are almost twice as likely as overweight and obese white women to respond that they are ‘about the right weight’ or ‘underweight.’”

The researchers wanted to better understand why this is, so they recruited a group of African-American women from a poor neighborhood in Chicago and, after asking them to give their weights and heights, presented them with the following image, which researchers have developed as a means of visually representing body mass indexes ranging from 16 (far left) to 40 (far right):

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SOURCE: NY Mag – Jesse Singal

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