Unbearable weight: Young adult women’s experiences of being overweight

Yu Jen Chang, Yiing Mei Liou*, Shuh Jen Sheu, Mei Yen Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Being over weight is a hazard to health. Over weight people have a very negative image due to the marketing strategies for weight reduction and beauty products. Young women establishing self-image, seeking affirmation of social peers, and looking for potential mates are usually concerned about their weight and figure. To investigate the experience of young women who think they are over weight, how they come to think in this way, and the impact of this thinking, this qualitative pilot study conducted semi-structured interviews with five participants. On the basis of the qualitative method, data was subjected to constant comparison and content analysis. The phenomenon can thus be described in three major categories: (1) Social labeling of the over weight - a slimimage is over whelmingly pre ferred; (2) Pursuing attractive ness or health - a self-struggling process; (3) Weight reduction and self control - an end less struggle. The result of the study suggests there is a need for a competitive image to counter current obsessions with painfully slender figures in society. To protect the public's mental and physical health, nurses should play an active role in weight education based on a deeper and more dynamic under standing of being over weight.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-160
Number of pages8
JournalThe journal of nursing research : JNR
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2004


  • At tractiveness
  • Body image
  • Over weight
  • Weight reduction
  • Young adult women


Dive into the research topics of 'Unbearable weight: Young adult women’s experiences of being overweight'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this