Friendship with Obese Peers Leads to Weight Problems

American researchers from the University of Hawaii have arrived at a truly sensational conclusion about overweight teens and their closest company, BBC reports.

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According to scientists, friendships between teens with normal weight and their obese peers fuel the risk of excessive weight in the former. As Tam Fry, obesity expert, explains, this link is down to picking up bad habits.

In this situation, one deals with so-called imitative obesity when the adolescents (consciously or unconsciously) begin to follow their friends who gain on weight.

American scientists based their conclusions on a two-year study of over 5000 teenagers. They found that the teens who hang out with overweight peers also tend to gain on excessive pounds. No matter how far these friends may live, it doesn’t diminish their influence.

The reasons behind this influence are simple: friends bond by shared interests and habits. As obese people avoid physical activity and eat unhealthy food, their peers start picking up the same habits.

Detailed study is published in Economics and Human Biology.

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