Implicit theories of the causes of weight gain in adults

Nicole Ware, Mary Dryer

Research output: Other contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review

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This study sought to explore the range of beliefs about weightgain and whether these beliefs varied according to personal weightmanagement history. A questionnaire specifically designed for thestudy was completed by 376 participants (94 males, 282 females;mean age 43.65 years, SD=13.24). Principal component analysisidentified five causal attribution factors which were interpreted asLack-of-Self-Control, Lifestyle-Limitations, Psychological,Biological/Medical, and Modern-Living. The level of endorsementfor these causal attribution factors suggested an acknowledgementof the multiple causes to weight gain. However, the most highlyendorsed factor, Lack-of-Self Control, reflected the'commonsense' view of weight gain being a matter of overeating,under-exercising and lacking in self control. Personal weightmanagement history was found to be associated with variations inbeliefs with the more effort one had applied to weightmanagement; the more highly they endorsed causes both withinand outside of individual control.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventCognitive Science Society Annual Conference - Sapporo, Japan, Japan
Duration: 01 Aug 201204 Aug 2012


ConferenceCognitive Science Society Annual Conference


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