Yes, you’ve heard it right – those who are married or just live with a beloved person weigh more than single individuals do, statistics suggests. There are many reasons why it is so, and if a couple has children, it does not alleviate the situation. Still, if you are in a happy relationship, do these extra pounds really matter?.
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Pounds of happiness
In a study carried out by a team of scientists from the University of Queensland, it was revealed that completion of a quest for the soulmate often results in gaining several extra pounds.
They analyzed the information about more than 15.000 people, collected over 10 years. It turned out that those of them who were happy in their relationships weighed 5.8 kg more on average, compared to those who were single. What is more, the rate at which they were gaining weight was 1.8 kg a year. The researchers were interested in what activity the study participants engaged in, how much food they consumed, and whether they watched TV a lot. While the quality of meals turned out to be higher in couples, food consumption also appeared to be higher (according to their self-reported data).
Why is it so?
Well, there are many causes behind it. Starting to live with a person you love means changing your habits, and couples are more likely to spend time in a different way, compared to what they used to do before they moved in.
- Despite the fact that couples generally eat more healthy food, like lean meat, fish, vegetables and fruits, they also tend to change their eating patterns in such a way that leads to calorie intake increase. When people eat together, they eat more than they would have eaten if they were alone, and the longer you stay at the dinner table, the more you are likely to reach for another helping.
- Yet it’s not the only way relationships affect eating patterns and habits. Couples often spend time watching TV, and the snacks that accompany it usually contain a lot of sugar and salt, to say nothing of the fats.
- If you are married, you are not supposed to skip meals: when it is meal time, it is not a good idea to leave your spouse alone, which means you are likely to eat more.
- Those who have children have even more opportunities to eat more than their bodies need, as there are leftovers that are usually eaten by adults (you are not going to throw them away, aren’t you?). Besides, children love soft drinks full of sugar, and snacks, so if there is a child in your home, you will find chocolate bars and cookies all over the kitchen – and even grown-ups often fail to resist the lure of chocolates!
- It should be admitted that most people stop bothering about their waistline once they are married: many couples do not find any reason for that, as their spouses love them the way they are, and there is no need to attract other women/men. That is why married people are generally not scrupulous about keeping fit. Well, it does not mean that getting married implies getting used to the thought that you are going to be obese – actually, you can and should stay in good shape for your spouse!
The above said things may be frustrating to some, but if these extra pounds are the only drawback of the relationship – who cares? Being overweight is not the same as being obese, and the joy of having meals together and being the other half of your beloved one outweighs the weight gain associated with it. It’s not an axiom, after all, and you can alternate meals with physical activities that you can do together – like cycling, hiking or whatever else.