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Women's work. Maintaining a healthy body weight


Welch, N and Hunter, W and Butera, K and Willis, KF and Cleland, V and Crawford, D and Ball, K, Women's work. Maintaining a healthy body weight, Appetite: The Journal for Research on Intake, and Dietary Practices, Their Control and Consequences, 53, (1) pp. 9-15. ISSN 0195-6663 (2009) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.appet.2009.04.221


This study describes women's perceptions of the supports and barriers to maintaining a healthy weight among currently healthy weight women from urban and rural socio-economically disadvantaged areas. Using focus groups and interviews, we asked women about their experiences of maintaining a healthy weight. Overwhelmingly, women described their healthy weight practices in terms of concepts related to work and management. The theme of 'managing health' comprised issues of managing multiple responsibilities, time, and emotions associated with healthy practices. Rural women faced particular difficulties in accessing supports at a practical level (for example, lack of childcare) and due to the gendered roles they enacted in caring for others. Family background (in particular, mothers' attitudes to food and weight) also appeared to influence perceptions about healthy weight maintenance. In the context of global increases in the prevalence of obesity, the value of initiatives aimed at supporting healthy weight women to maintain their weight should not be under-estimated. Such initiatives need to work within the social and personal constraints that women face in maintaining good health. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Public health
Research Field:Health promotion
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Behaviour and health
UTAS Author:Willis, KF (Dr Karen Willis)
UTAS Author:Cleland, V (Associate Professor Verity Cleland)
ID Code:58763
Year Published:2009
Web of Science® Times Cited:12
Deposited By:Sociology and Social Work
Deposited On:2009-10-26
Last Modified:2012-02-06

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