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Type: Journal article
Title: Does psychosocial stress explain socioeconomic inequities in 9-year weight gain among young women?
Author: Ball, K.
Schoenaker, D.
Mishra, G.
Citation: Obesity, 2017; 25(6):1109-1114
Publisher: North American Association for the Study of Obesity
Issue Date: 2017
ISSN: 1930-7381
Statement of
Kylie Ball, Danielle A.J.M. Schoenaker, and Gita D. Mishra
Abstract: Objective: This study investigated the contribution of psychosocial stress to mediating inequities in weight gain by educational status in a large cohort of young Australian women over a 9-year follow-up. Methods: This observational cohort study used survey data drawn from 4,806 women, aged 22 to 27 years at baseline (2000), participating in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health, who reported their education level (2000), perceived stress (2003), and weight (2003 and 2012). Using a causal inference framework based on counterfactuals for mediation analysis, we fitted linear or logistic regression models to examine the total effect, decomposed into natural direct and indirect effects via perceived stress, of education level (highest qualification completed: up to year 12/trade or diploma vs. university) on weight change. Results: Women with lower education gained more weight over 9 years (6.1 kg, standard deviation [SD] 9.5) than women with higher education (3.8 kg, SD 7.7; P<0.0001) and were more likely to be very or extremely stressed. The higher weight gain associated with low education was not mediated through perceived stress (per SD increase, percent mediated: 1.0%). Conclusions: Education-based inequities in weight gain over time were not attributable to greater psychosocial stress among women with lower education levels.
Keywords: Humans
Body Weight
Weight Gain
Cohort Studies
Longitudinal Studies
Stress, Psychological
Time Factors
Socioeconomic Factors
Young Adult
Description: Published online 28 April 2017
Rights: © 2017 The Obesity Society
DOI: 10.1002/oby.21830
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