Study: Your Spouse’s Bad Habits Can Make You Fat Even If You Grew Up With Healthy Habits



The first winter that I was dating my now-husband, I found by February that my pants didn’t fit so great. It was easy to see why, once I stopped to think about it: Frigid nights spent on the couch binge-watching whatever our latest chosen series was on Netflix, and me answering “Sure,” to just about any deliverable meal he suggested, from stromboli to nachos.

When I mentioned something along the lines of, Dude, I am gaining so much weight and I’m pretty sure it’s your fault, he barely looked up from his phone as he offered a casual confirmation: “Oh, yeah,” he said. “I’m kind of known for making my girlfriends fat. Some of them have never recovered.”

Because the thing is, boys can eat like monsters and it won’t have nearly the affect on them that eating in such a way will on us—my friend and former Philly magger Jenna Bergen Southerland wrote about this phenomenon in her book, Your Big Fat Boyfriend years ago. And now, a new study out of the Medical Research Council’s Human Genetics Unit at the University of Edinburgh has confirmed what we, girls of tight-fitting pants and monster-eating significant others, have long known: Your partner’s lifestyle can influence your weight even more than whatever environment you grew up in.

The study’s leader, Professor Chris Haley, found after analyzing data from over 20,000 people that the lifestyle choices you make as an adult—influenced heavily by the partner you’re sharing your life with—have much more to do with weight gain and even obesity than the habits you developed while growing up, even if they were healthy, and the genetics handed down to you by your parents:

“Although genetics accounts for a significant proportion of the variation between people, our study has shown that the environment you share with your partner in adulthood also influences whether you become obese and this is more important than your upbringing.

“The findings also show that even people who come from families with a history of obesity can reduce their risk by changing their lifestyle habits.”

This will ring true, we’re guessing, to any of you who have found your honey to be a rather distracting force as you try to get wedding-dress ready—or who have simply woken up one day to find their pants a little tight. But hey, just drag him to one of these local exercise classes that are especially fun for you guys to do together, and we have no doubt you’ll be able to turn this ship around.

To read more about bridal health, nutrition and wellness, go here

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