Body image and weight concerns among Southwestern American Indian preadolescent schoolchildren.

Document Type


Publication Date



This study was undertaken to determine whether perceptions about body image and size vary by body mass index (BMI) and demographic factors among American Indian children in the Southwestern United States. We surveyed 1,996 American Indian schoolchildren in the fifth grade (mean age 10.5 +/- 0.7 years) at eleven rural elementary schools. Heights and weights were measured using standard protocol. Multiple linear regression models were developed for preferred body shape, desired body shape, and body satisfaction to determine association with demographic and physical factors. Results from multiple linear regression modeling indicated that BMI and gender influence body satisfaction, with heavier children and girls being less satisfied with their bodies (P