SEOUL, Feb. 15 (Korea Bizwire) — A recent study has revealed that younger South Korean women tend to wrongly think of themselves as overweight, while older women see themselves as slimmer than they actually are.
A joint research team led by Prof. Lee Yu-mie from Yonsei Severance Hospital and Prof. Choi Kui-son from the National Cancer Center conducted a study on the level of accuracy among South Korean women when it comes to their perceptions about their own body.
The study showed that 33 percent of 15,084 female participants saw themselves as slimmer than they actually were, while 12.1 percent thought they weighed more than they actually did, showing that almost half of all respondents had a misperception about their weight.
The data also showed that 12.6 percent of all women in their 20s, 15.1 percent of those in their 30s, 22.2 percent of those in their 40s, 34 percent of those in their 50s, 45.6 percent of those in their 60s, and 60.7 percent of those in their 70s thought they weighed less than they actually did, which indicates that South Korean women increasingly tend to think of themselves as slimmer when they get older.
More than half of all women in their 70s were found to perceive themselves as slimmer, which showed, according to the research team, that South Korean women in their 70s, compared to those in their 20s, were 2.96 times more likely to think of themselves as slimmer.
On the other hand, 18.7 percent of those in their 20s, 17.8 percent of those in their 30s, 14.3 percent of those in their 40s, 10.8 percent of those in their 50s, 8.5 percent of those in their 60s, and 7.4 of those in their 70s saw themselves as weighing more than they actually did, showing that fewer South Korean women perceived themselves to be overweight as they grew older.
Younger women, with a deep interest in outward beauty, were more likely to see themselves as weighing more than they actually did. Compared to women in their 70s, they were 1.48 times more likely to think that way.
The research team pointed out that having misperceptions about weight can lead to harmful practices that may undermine both one’s physical and psychological health.
In particular, older women should be motivated to maintain an appropriate weight by overcoming the stereotype that “plump means health” and being more aware of the medical consequences of being overweight, the team said.
H. M. Kang (firstname.lastname@example.org)