The study, published in the September issue of Journal of Health Economics found that friends' weight is correlated with an adolescent’s own weight even after considering demographics, smoking status, birth weight, and household characteristics such as parental obesity.
"Our results may help explain the dramatic rise in obesity among adolescents in the past few decades," said Justin Trogdon, Ph.D. a health economist at RTI and the paper's lead author. "Peers can influence all of the significant weight-related choices for teens, including eating patterns, diets and physical activity. Peers also affect teens’ perceptions of an acceptable weight."
The researchers found the peer effect on weight was strongest among females, and among adolescents who were at risk of becoming overweight.
The study also showed that teens with obese parents were more likely to be overweight themselves.
The study used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, a study that RTI helped conduct, that surveyed youths in grades 7 through 12. The researchers looked at students from 16 schools included in the data and defined peer groups based on friendships and grade level.
"Research has also indicated that peers may help adolescents to lose weight," Trogdon said. "Better understanding peer influence on weight will help improve policies and prevention efforts aimed at reducing adolescent weight."
Lisa Bistreich | Newswise Science News
New measure for the wellbeing of populations could replace Human Development Index
07.11.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
Because not only arguments count
30.10.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Mathematik in den Naturwissenschaften (MPIMIS)
The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.
Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...
What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...
A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.
The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...
A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.
Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...
Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...
12.12.2018 | Event News
10.12.2018 | Event News
06.12.2018 | Event News
14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy