Obesity Stigma in Online News: A Visual Content Analysis

  title={Obesity Stigma in Online News: A Visual Content Analysis},
  author={Chelsea A. Heuer and Kimberly J McClure and Rebecca M. Puhl},
  journal={Journal of Health Communication},
  pages={976 - 987}
This study conducted a content analysis to examine the types of images that accompany online news stories about obesity and to determine how obese people are portrayed in news photographs. [] Key Method Images were selected from news articles about obesity obtained from 5 major news Web sites, during a 2-week period in September of 2009. Images accompanying news stories about obesity (N = 549) were systematically coded. Of 441 individuals identified in news photographs, 65% were overweight/obese and 27% were…

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Positive media portrayals of obese persons: impact on attitudes and image preferences.

  • R. PearlR. PuhlK. Brownell
  • Medicine
    Health psychology : official journal of the Division of Health Psychology, American Psychological Association
  • 2012
Assessment of the impact of nonstereotypical, positive media portrayals of obese persons on biased attitudes and a change in media practices that could reduce public weight bias and consequent negative health outcomes for those who experience weight stigma indicate that more positive media portrayed of obese individuals may help reduce weight stigma and its associatednegative health outcomes.

Stigmatizing images in the media – a cross‐national survey

Media in Hong Kong, South Africa, Italy and Morocco had the highest prevalence of stigmatizing imagery, whereas Japan and New Zealand displayed the lowest, and countries ranked according to the ratio of positive to negative imagery used.



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Viewing photographic portrayals of an obese person in a stereotypical or unflattering way could increase negative attitudes about obesity, even when the content of an accompanying news story is neutral.

Beauty and Thinness Messages in Children's Media: A Content Analysis

Results indicated that messages emphasizing the importance of physical appearance and portraying body stereotypes are present in many children's videos but relatively few books and Implications of an association of beauty and thinness in children's media are explored.

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Overweight and obese television characters are associated with specific negative characteristics in the general population and are less likely to be considered attractive, to interact with romantic partners, or to display physical affection.

The Stigma of Obesity: A Review and Update

This review expands upon previous findings of weight bias in major domains of living, documents new areas where weight bias has been studied, and highlights ongoing research questions that need to be addressed to advance this field of study.

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A content analysis of 18 prime-time television situation comedies (two episodes each) examined the body weights of 37 central female characters (92% White, 8% Black), the negative comments they

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Information on discriminatory attitudes and behaviors against obese individuals is reviewed, integrating this to show whether systematic discrimination occurs and why, and needed work in the field is discussed.

Talking about Obesity: News Framing of Who Is Responsible for Causing and Fixing the Problem

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