'Fat shaming' has surprisingly far-reaching effects, says study

A new study reveals the negative implications of judging someone

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Making fun of or criticising people who are overweight is not only insensitive - but a new study suggests it can be detrimental to health.

In a recent University of Pennsylvania study, 159 obese adults were given a questionnaire that looked at that person's perception of their laziness and unattractiveness.

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These adults were then separated into two groups based on either a high or low positive bias internalisation score - or rather on how much they were affected by an outsider's positive or negative approach to their weight.

The group with high internalisation scores were three times more likely to have metabolic syndrome - a condition that increases risk of heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.

There is a stigma that obese people are incompetent unattractive and lazy and it's easy for thinner people to want to stare down an overweight person eating a donut.

But that just makes you look like the bully and causes that individual to actually skip the gym and find more comfort in food.

So ditch the staring contest - don't we all have our own problems anyway?