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Simply being called ‘fat’ makes young girls more likely to become obese, study finds

Jonathan Marker | Science Recorder | April 29, 2014

Simply being called ‘fat’ makes young girls more likely to become obese, study finds

By and large, the researchers found that the girls labeled fat were 1.66 times more likely than the other girls to be obese at 19.

The results of a study led by UCLA psychologist A. Janet Tomiyama and colleagues show that girls who are told by a parent, sibling, friend, classmate or teacher that they are “too fat” at age 10 are more likely to be obese at age 19.  The data used in the study came from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health.

The study assessed 1,213 African-American girls and 1,166 white girls living in Northern California, Cincinnati and Washington, D.C.  Fifty-eight percent of these girls had been told they were too fat at age 10.  Each of the subjects had their height and weight measured at the beginning of the study and again after nine years.

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