University of ArizonaNorton School of Family and Consumer Sciences

UA Study: Could Your Relationship Be Contributing to Your Weight Gain?

The obesity epidemic in the United States has been linked to a number of factors – environmental, political, economic. One University of Arizona researcher now is looking at how a person’s relationship with his or her romantic partner might also play a role.

Emily Butler, associate professor of family studies and human development, is leading a study that looks at how certain relationship dynamics in romantic couples might lead to unhealthy habits and ultimately unwanted weight gain.

“We’re looking at the kinds of emotional and interpersonal behavioral patterns going on in couples and to what extent those predict unhealthy versus healthy eating and activity habits and eventually weight gain or weight maintenance,” said Butler, who directs the UA’s Health & Interpersonal Systems Research Group.

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