Family, Friends, and Social Ties Influence A Person’s Weight

Jan 03, 2012
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Studies now show what we all suspected, people tend to hang out with others who have similar lifestyles, habits, interests and challenges. In a recent study of 288 young adults between age 18 – 25, people who were overweight were significantly more likely to have overweight friends and romantic interests.

About 40% of people in this age group are considered to be overweight. They tend to gain more weight per year than overweight persons in other age groups, and they lose less weight when they enter weight control programs.

In the study both overweight people and normal range weight people believed that overweight is  socially acceptable, as is eating unhealthy foods and being inactive. Among the youth who were overweight in the study had more friends and romantic partners who were trying to lose weight than did normal weight range peers.

The researchers believed that the youth who were overweight and who were dieting together were receiving postive emotional support and encouragement from their friends, and that more appealing and effective lifestyle interventions need to be developed for this important group.


Science Daily

Author: Tanya

  • BobLujano

    The positive aspect of this piece is that overweight people are not socially excluded and that they are encouraged, probably now more than ever, to have a healthy active lifestyle.