Everybody's heard the phrase, "Sticks and stones may hurt my bones, but words will never hurt me." But anyone who's been picked on or bullied knows it's not true, and now, science backs that up, especially when it comes to "fat-shaming" people into losing weight.
A new study published in Obesity looked at British residents aged 50 and up and found that those who "experienced discrimination, harassment, or threats as a result of their weight were more likely to gain weight in the long run" than those who hadn't, Science of Us reports.
Science of Us points out that the study has its limits (the age of the participants, for example, plus there are questions about causality), but the conclusion backs up the results of a 2010 study that suggested that overweight people who face discrimination based on their size were two times more likely to become obese by the end of the study than their thinner counterparts were.
Our take? Making an effort to cut back on drinking, exercising more, following a healthy diet, and getting enough sleep are all important steps to take in losing weight, but weight loss is a long, sometimes arduous process, even under the best of circumstances. There's no reason to be mean to people about it. And bullying, no matter its form, is painful, and downright wrong.
What do you think of the study? Sound off below or tweet us @Shape_Magazine!