Gender and weight concerns in adolescent smokers

Addict Behav. 2006 Nov;31(11):2140-6. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2006.02.021. Epub 2006 Mar 29.


The aim of this study was to examine smoking-specific weight concerns in a well-characterized sample of adolescent daily smokers and the influence of gender, age, and body mass index (BMI). Adolescent smokers (n=103) were asked two smoking-specific weight concern questions: "How much do cigarettes help you control your weight?" and "How concerned are you about gaining weight as a result of quitting?" A significant positive relationship was found between average daily cigarette use and belief in smoking as a means to control weight and a significant negative relationship between the years of smoking and belief that smoking controls weight. There was no significant relationship between BMI and smoking to control weight for females, whereas for males, there was a positive relationship, indicating that heavier males were more likely to report smoking to control weight. Additionally, females who smoked more cigarettes reported more concern about gaining weight upon quitting, a pattern not seen in males. Results highlight potentially important gender differences in the relationship between weight concerns and smoking and the influence these concerns may have on quitting smoking.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight*
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Psychology, Adolescent
  • Sex Factors
  • Smoking / psychology*
  • Smoking Cessation / psychology
  • Weight Gain