Young Adults’ Attitudes and Perceptions of Obesity and Weight Management: Implications for Treatment Development


Young adults are underrepresented in standard behavioral weight loss trials, and evidence suggests that they differ from older adults on many weight-related constructs. The aim of this review is to explore young adults’ attitudes toward obesity and weight management, with particular attention to those factors that may play a role in the development of future treatment efforts. Both intrapersonal and interpersonal considerations unique to young adulthood are assessed; in addition, we examine young adults’ perceptions of specific weight-related behaviors such as dieting, physical activity, and self-weighing. Conclusions are consistent with other findings suggesting that weight management interventions should be adapted and designed specifically for this age group.

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Correspondence to Jessica Gokee LaRose.

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Autumn Lanoye, Amy A. Gorin, and Jessica Gokee LaRose declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Etiology of Obesity

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Lanoye, A., Gorin, A.A. & LaRose, J.G. Young Adults’ Attitudes and Perceptions of Obesity and Weight Management: Implications for Treatment Development. Curr Obes Rep 5, 14–22 (2016).

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  • Young adults
  • Emerging adults
  • Weight management
  • Overweight
  • Obesity
  • Treatment development