Washington D.C.: Researcher have recently claimed that the lifestyle a person shares with his/her partner has a greater influence on their chances of becoming obese than their upbringing.
Scientists from the University of Edinburg claimed that the choices made by couples in their middle age including those linked to diet and exercise have a much greater impact than the lifestyle each shared with siblings and parents growing up.
Although by middle age siblings have a shared risk of being obese, this is mostly attributable to their shared genetic inheritance rather than any habits instilled during their shared upbringing.
Researchers said that their study will help scientists better understand links between obesity, genetics and lifestyle habits.
Their findings reinforce the message that lifestyle changes in adulthood can have a significant impact in tackling obesity, regardless of a person's genetic profile.
During the research, the team analysed data provided by 20,000 people from Scottish families. They compared people's family genetics and home environments in childhood and adulthood and related these to measures linked to health and obesity.
Lead researcher Professor Chris Haley said that although genetics accounts for a significant proportion of the variation between people, their 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.
He added that 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. The study has been published in the journal PLOS Genetics....