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Psychiatry Investigation 2006;3(1):87-96.
Emotional Instability and Harm Avoidance for Childhood Obesity are Related to the Motivation for Weight Loss: A Pilot Study in Korea
Keun-Ah Cheon, MD, PhD1;Dong-Hwan Lee, MD, PhD2;Jin-Yong Jun, MD1; and Kee Namkoong, MD, PhD3;
1;Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Kwandong University, Kyunggi, 2;Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Soonchunhyang University, Seoul, 3;Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine,
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</font><font face="HY중고딕" size="2">The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between such psychosocial variables as the emotional and characteristic factors, and the motivation for weight loss in children with obesity.


Thirty-seven children (mean age: 9.4±1.2 years) between the ages of 7 and 12 who had entered a summer camp for childhood obesity and their parents participated in this study. A questionnaire on the eating habits and life style of the child, the Child Behavioral Checklist (CBCL), and the Child Character Inventory (CCI) were completed by the parents of the subjects. The obese children completed the Child Depression Inventory (CDI) and the Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI) by themselves. We evaluated the motivation of the obese children to lose weight by having them take the Weight Loss Readiness Test (WLRT). Then, we analyzed the correlation between the psychological variables and the WLRT items.


The emotional instability scale on the CBCL was correlated with the WLRT item of emotional eating (r=0.336, p=0.042). The harm avoidance scale of the CCI was negatively correlated with the WLRT item on exercise patterns and attitudes (r=-0.047, p=0.014). However, no significant correlation was found between each of the severity scores of the CDI depressive symptoms and the other psychological variables and each of the six WLRT items.


Our findings suggest that emotional instability and harm avoidance, as measured by the CCI, are related to the motivation for weight loss in obese children.</font>

Key words   Childhood obesity;Psychological factors;Motivation;Weight loss.
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