We are currently featuring the article titled “Refinement of the Beliefs About Personal Weight Survey” by Stephanie Pickett, PhD, RN; Rosalind M. Peters, PhD, RN, FAAN and Thomas Templin, PhD. You can download the article at no charge while it is featured! Here is a message from Dr. Pickett about her work:
Dr. Stephanie Pickett
Culturally-related beliefs about personal weight are thought to contribute to behaviors leading to the high prevalence of overweight and obesity among African American women. However, no tools existed that measured beliefs about personal weight among young African American women. This gap in the literature was addressed with the initial development and testing of the Beliefs about Personal Weight Survey.
In our current study we report the revisions and psychometric evaluation of the revised Beliefs about Personal Weight Survey (BPWS-2) with a sample of young African American women. Our goal was to reduce and refine the original items to make the Survey more useful in clinical and research settings. Psychometric evaluation of the BPWS-2 showed that the four factors from the original BPWS reemerged (Weight Acceptance, Weight Concern, Conventional Weight Regulation, Circumstantial Weight Regulation) along with a fifth factor (Excess Weight Acknowledgement). This fifth factor represents a distinction between accepting personal weight as overweight verses acknowledging personal weight as excessive. This distinction was associated with specific eating behaviors.
The five factors (subscales) were sensitive enough to determine unique eating behaviors and psychosocial factors that influence body mass index among young African American women. Findings from this study indicate that understanding beliefs about personal weight may be a critical component in developing effective weight management strategies.
Our featured article for the next couple of weeks is titled “Development and Validation of the Beliefs About Personal Weight Survey Among African American Women” by Stephanie Pickett, PhD, RN; Rosalind M. Peters, PhD, RN, FAAN and Thomas Templin, PhD. This article reports the development of an empirical measure that integrates culturally related beliefs. The article is available for download at no cost while it is featured. Here is a message that Dr. Pickett shared about her work:
My program of research focuses on reduction of hypertension-related risk factors among African Americans, with a specific interest in psychosocial factors that influence weight management among African American women such as weight beliefs, perceived stress,
emotions and eating behavior patterns. My initial research examined beliefs about hypertension and self-care behaviors among African
Americans and found that a significant relationship existed between hypertension beliefs and behaviors that affect blood pressure control. I then became interested in examining weight beliefs and weight management behaviors given that obesity is a risk factor for hypertension. I focused on African American women due to the high proportion of overweight and obese women in this group.
As I examined the weight belief literature, I discovered that most of the research about weight beliefs among African American women were qualitative studies that methodologically could not examine relationships between beliefs and behaviors. I also discovered that there were numerous instruments that measured weight beliefs that mainly focused on beliefs about obesity. These instruments gathered important information, but none measured beliefs about personal weight across the weight spectrum and none were developed and normed with African American women. My dissertation work filled this gap in the literature with the development and initial testing of the Beliefs about Personal Weight Survey (BPWS) with young African American women. This survey shows promising results with adequate reliability and validity.
My next step is to revise the BPWS to make it a useful tool for clinicians and researchers to examine weight beliefs as a component of weight management interventions among African American women.