Your Friends Make You Fat

On a diet? If your friends are overweight, you might as well give up.

By Lesley Kennedy • Reporter

They say birds of a feather flock together, but if you’re looking to lighten your load, you may want to fly with the svelte hummingbirds rather than the blubber-laden penguins.

It seems obesity, The Telegraph in London reports, is actually contagious: The fatter your friends or family, the greater the chance you’re also packing on the pounds.

According to the newspaper, researchers from Arizona State University say part of the reason for this plump pal posse could be subliminal. You know, your BFF just inhaled a plate of Ranch dressing-soaked chicken wings, washed down with a couple of beers (regular, of course, no light crap here), so it just seems natural that you would do the same. One good bite deserves another, right?

Another possibility: the food pusher friend. “Here, sweetie! You simply must have a second slice of this chocolate caramel cheesecake. And don’t you dare go to the gym to work it off. A few more pounds and we can share clothes!”

Then, there’s the obvious: Socializing with heavier friends means eating and sitting and eating some more, The Telegraph reports.

So, next time you can’t pass the fries? Well, you have only your friends to blame.

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First Published May 23, 2011

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