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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 8-14

Perception of body image and weight status in Algerian adult population: A wrong self-evaluation

1 Department of Nutrition, Institute of Nutrition, Food and Agro-Food Technologies (INATAA), University of Brother’s Mentouri Constantine 1 (UFMC1), Constantine, Algeria; Laboratory of Food, Nutrition and Health (ALNUTS), University Salah Boubnider Constantine 3, Constantine, Algeria
2 Department of Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Abdelhamid Mehri, University Constantine 2, Constantine, Algeria

Correspondence Address:
Chaima Boudaoud
Department of Nutrition, Institute of Nutrition, Food and Agro-Food Technologies (INATAA), University of Brother’s Mentouri Constantine 1, Aïn El Bey Road, 25 000 Constantine
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/sjo.SJO_1_22

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Background: Overweight and obesity is increasing among Algerian adults with a prevalence of 55.6% in 2017. Numerous studies demonstrate that obesity is associated with the misperception of body weight. The latter causes in the individual dissatisfaction with his or her body, which could affect his or her behavior with regard to weight control and self-esteem. Aim: The objective of this study is to describe the body image perception of Algerian adults according to their body size. Settings and Design: A cross-sectional survey by a questionnaire was conducted at the city of Constantine (Eastern Algeria) from January 13 to July 31, 2019. Materials and Methods: A survey was carried among 405 adults (25–65 years old). Body mass index has been classified according to the World Health Organization references (2000). The Figure Rating Scale of Stunkard et al. (1983) was used to evaluate the body image. Statistical Analysis: Data were analyzed using Epi-Info 7 software. We used the Student’s t test, the chi-squared test, and the analysis of variance for, respectively, the comparison between two means, the comparison between two percentages, and the comparison of several means. Statistical significance was set at 0.05. Results: Between all adults, 25.9% were (n = 105) obese, and they were the most likely to underestimate their weight. About 70.5% of them (n = 74) chose an ideal overweight body, and 88.6% (n = 93) had a wrong perception of their body weight. Among the participants, 60.6% of men (n = 175) and 68.1% of women (n = 79) were dissatisfied with their body image. Conclusion: The ideal body image for the majority of women and men was represented by a large figure. The wrong self-evaluation of adults’ current figure could significantly influence their eating behavior. The evaluation of body image and self-esteem of Algerians seems necessary to develop effective strategies for obesity prevention.

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