Marquette University Study Finds Women’s Lifestyle Habits Regarding Their Weight Are Influenced by Their Peers

YakushevaA study led by Dr. Olga Yakusheva at Marquette University in Milwaukee finds that women’s lifestyle choices regarding their weight are influenced by their peers but there is no similar influence on men by their peers. The study examined weight gain in 751 male and 845 female first-year college students and their roommates.

The results show that the women were influenced by their roommates, particularly when the roommate was thinner, from a higher socioeconomic status, or was more sexually experienced.

Dr. Yakusheva states, “Your behaviors affect other people, especially those who may be looking up to you as a role model.” Women who are fit and pursue a healthy lifestyle may not only be helping themselves but also those women who with they come in contact.

The study, “Estimating Heterogeneous and Hierarchical Peer Effects on Body Weight Using Roommate Assignments as a Natural Experiment,” has been scheduled for publication in the Journal of Human Resources early in 2014.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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