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International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health

Editor-in-Chief: Merrick, Joav

Editorial Board: Birch, Diana ML / Blum, Robert W. / Greydanus, MD, Dr. HC (Athens), Donald E. / Hardoff, Daniel / Kerr, Mike / Levy, Howard B / Morad, Mohammed / Omar, Hatim A. / de Paul, Joaquin / Rydelius, Per-Anders / Shek, Daniel T.L. / Sher, Leo / Silber, Tomas J. / Towns, Susan / Urkin, Jacob / Verhofstadt-Deneve, Leni / Zeltzer, Lonnie / Tenenbaum, Ariel

CiteScore 2018: 0.79

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.350
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.476

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Flourishing and academic engagement among adolescents with overweight and obesity

Kristie RuppORCID iD: http://orcid.org/0000-0001-5444-8562 / Stephanie M. McCoy
  • School of Kinesiology and Nutrition, University of Southern Mississippi, 118 College Drive #5142, Hattiesburg, MS 39406, USA
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2018-11-29 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijamh-2018-0180



Overweight and obesity in adolescence are associated with several negative health indicators; the association with flourishing, an indicator of overall well-being, is less clear.


To examine associations between weight status and indicators of flourishing and academic engagement in adolescents.


Analyses included 22,078 adolescents (10–17 years) from the 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health.


Adolescents were grouped according to body mass index (BMI) classification; outcomes included indicators of flourishing and academic engagement. Logistic regression models assessed the odds of each outcome comparing adolescents with overweight and adolescents with obesity to healthy weight adolescents.


For flourishing, adolescents with overweight and adolescents with obesity were less likely to stay calm during a challenge (17% and 30%, respectively; p < 0.01); adolescents with obesity were 30% less likely to finish a task they started (p < 0.001), and 34% less likely to show interest in new things (p < 0.001) in comparison to healthy weight peers. Adolescents with obesity were 26% less likely to care about doing well in school (p < 0.001), and adolescents with overweight and adolescents with obesity were significantly less likely to complete all required homework (19% and 34%, respectively) (p < 0.001), in comparison to healthy weight peers.


A comprehensive approach to addressing overweight and obesity in adolescence should target improving academic engagement and flourishing to promote overall well-being.

This article offers supplementary material which is provided at the end of the article.

Keywords: academics; adolescence; flourishing; obesity


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About the article

Received: 2018-08-09

Accepted: 2018-10-09

Published Online: 2018-11-29

Citation Information: International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, 20180180, ISSN (Online) 2191-0278, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijamh-2018-0180.

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