Weight discrimination makes people more obese
Weight discrimination can have a significant effect on a person's mental and physical health and actually cause them to gain more weight, according to a new study at Florida State University. And a person’s race, gender, education, ethnicity or age doesn’t seem to make a big difference, say the researchers.
In a study of more than 6,000 people, obese people were found to become more obese if they perceived that they were discriminated against. In fact, those who felt this way more than doubled their risk of gaining weight when they were re-evaluated four years after initial study. While other studies have shown a link between weight discrimination and poor economic and psychological outcomes, this is one of the first to suggest that it might also have an impact on a person’s long-term body weight.
The authors noted that this can create a “vicious cycle” where people who are overweight and obese are more vulnerable to weight discrimination and that this discrimination can then lead to more obesity and weight problems.