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You are more likely to be fat if you have friends who are fat
Tuesday, July 31, 2007 12:22 am Email this article
"[O]besity appears to spread through social ties," concludes a new study by researchers from the Harvard Medical School. You are 57 percent more likely to be obese if you have an obese friend according to the study.
People of the same sex had more of an influence than those of the opposite sex. For example, male friends had more of an influence of men, and female friends had more of an influence of women.Sibling Influence
You are 40% more likely to be obese if you have a sibling who is obese
As an adult, if you have a brother or sister who is obese, you are 40 percent more likely to be obese.
You are 37% more likely to be obese if your husband or wife is obese
If you are married and your husband or wife becomes obese, you are 37 percent more likely to be obese.
You are no more likely to be obese if your neighbors are obese
Neighbors did not have an influence.
Smoking cessation did not have an influence on these connections
Smoking cessation did not account for the influence of obesity among friends and spouses.
Subjects: 12,067 people
The study evaluated “densely interconnected social network of 12,067 people assessed repeatedly from 1971 to 2003 as part of the Framingham Heart Study.”
Christakis N, Fowler JH. The spread of obesity in a large social network over 32 years. N Engl J Med. 2007 Jul 26, 357(4):370-79.
AUTHOR’S CONTACT INFORMATION
Nicholas A. Christakis, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H.
Department of Health Care Policy
Harvard Medical School
Boston, MA 02115, USA
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