A review of the empirical research on weight-based bullying and peer victimisation published between 2006 and 2016

Iyonna Thompson, Jun Sung Hong, Jeoung Min Lee, Nicholas Alexander Prys, Julie Toth Morgan, Ini Udo-Inyang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

Children and adolescents who are overweight or obese are at a heightened risk of bullying involvement. The aim of the literature review is to review empirical research on weight-based bullying published between 2006 and 2016. Extant research was categorised by the following themes: (1) prevalence of weight-based bullying and peer victimisation; (2) weight-based outcomes of bullying and peer victimisation; (3) bullying outcomes of weight gain and obesity; and (4) psychosocial distress and outcomes associated with weight-based bullying. Findings from the studies reviewed suggest that the prevalence of bullying is high in children who are overweight or obese. Moreover, longitudinal studies revealed that childhood bullying experiences can increase the risk of health problems, including weight gain and obesity. Further, children who are overweight or obese are at a heightened risk of bullying and peer victimisation. Finally, weight-based bullying experiences were found to be related to psychosocial problems, including lower motivation for physical activity, higher avoidance and emotional coping strategies, low self-esteem, and academic problems. Implications for practice are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-110
Number of pages23
JournalEducational Review
Volume72
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, © 2018 Educational Review.

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • bullying
  • children
  • peer victimisation
  • weight-based bullying

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