In African immigrants, the relationship between obesity and body size dissatisfaction and cardiometabolic health is unknown. Hence, we assessed body size dissatisfaction and cardiometabolic health in 352 African-born Blacks living in the Washington DC area (female: 39% (137/352) age 40±11y (mean±SD)). Using the Stunkard Figure Rating Scale, participants ranked their perceived body size and wish body size. Body size dissatisfaction was defined as the difference between perceived and wish body size. Adverse cardiometabolic health was determined by the presence of type 2 diabetes (T2D) or elevated BP (BP≥120/80) or elevated non-HDL cholesterol levels. Obesity prevalence was 27% (94/352) and higher in women than men (38% (52/137) vs 20% (42/215) P<0.01). Body size dissatisfaction was also higher in women than men (83% vs 69% P<0.01). However, among participants with obesity there was no sex difference in body size dissatisfaction (94% vs 91% P=0.49). Persons with obesity judged themselves to be: Too Large (92%) Just Right (7%) or Too Small (1%) (Figure). Obesity was associated with a higher prevalence of T2D (14% vs 5% P<0.01) elevated BP (51% vs 41% P=0.02) and higher non-HDL cholesterol (121±34 vs 113±33 mg/dL P=0.06). Obesity is viewed negatively by African immigrants and is associated with poor cardiometabolic health.


J.Hurston: None. C.C.Worthy: None. E.Shoup: None. J.Gatete: None. B.R.Schenk: None. L.Mabundo: None. C.Dubose: None. R.Jagannathan: None. M.F.Horlyck-romanovsky: None. A.E.Sumner: None.

Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered. More information is available at