If you want to see your girlfriend in shape, don’t ever call her ‘fat’.
A new study has found that calling any girl fat may up her chances of being obese.
The psychologists at the University of California, Los Angeles, led the study and found that girls who are called fat by their parents, friends or others are more likely to get obese at age 19.
For deriving the conclusion, the researchers conducted study on 1,213 African-American girls and 116 white girls who were residents of Cincinnati, Northern California and Washington D.C.
58 percent of the participating girls were told that they were too fat when they were 10.
The girl’s height and weight were measured at the beginning and ending of the study. They were measured again after nine years. The researchers have considered the data of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. It is a part of the National Institute of Health.
During the study period, the researchers found that the girls who were called fat suffered a high risk of being obese at the age of 19 as compared to other girls. Moreover, the likelihood of being obese nine years later was 1.66 times more in these girls.
Study author A. Janet Tomiyama said, “Simply being labeled as too fat has a measurable effect almost a decade later. We nearly fell off our chairs when we discovered this. Even after we statistically removed the effects of their actual weight, their income, their race and when they reached puberty, the effect remained.”
Tomiyama is an assistant professor of psychology in the UCLA College of Letters and Science.
A graduate student at UC Santa Barbara, Jeffrey Hunger, said, “Being labeled as too fat may lead people to worry about personally experiencing the stigma and discrimination faced by overweight individuals, and recent research suggests that experiencing or anticipating weight stigma increases stress and can lead to overeating.”
The current study was published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.