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Will You Be Obese? Look at Your Sisters, Brothers

Study found older sibling's obesity was strongest predictor for risk

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The study also found a link between gender and obesity risk. In homes with one child, girls were less likely to be obese than boys.

In homes with two children, Harding's group found that younger kids are influenced by older siblings, especially if they're same gender.

The youngest boy in a two-child home is 11.4 times more likely to be obese if the older brother is, they noted. If the older child is a girl, the boy is 6.6 times more likely to be obese.

If the youngest child is a girl, she is 8.6 times more likely to be obese if she has an obese older sister. But if she has an obese older brother she is not significantly more likely to be obese, the researchers found.

Exercise and how much the kids eat both play a key role in the prevention of obesity. Harding's team found that an only child was less likely to be physically active and more likely to eat fast food than those who had brothers and sisters.

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