Facebook Health? The Social Network Might Make You Fat, Study Finds

Facebook Fat

Is Facebo0k making people fat? The next time you pack on five pounds you might want to evaluate your social networking use. A new study published in the Journal of Consumer Research has found that increased self-esteem brought about by your friends on the network can actually reduce self control and lead to over eating.

In a survey of 470 people researchers discovered that Facebook and general internet can actually increase a persons body mass index (BMI). According to the study people with a lot of Facebook friends have an average BMI of 26, while infrequent users of Facebook have a BMI of 24.

To study their findings researchers had 84 Facebook users read their news feed and stories from CNN for 5 minutes. After they finished their task users were asked to choose between a cookie and a granola bar. CNN readers didn’t show self-esteem increases and chose the granola bar, while Facebook users felt good about themselves and 80 percent chose the cookies.

Facebook could also be hurting your wallet, the study found that people with many friends have $1,000 more in credit card debt on average.

Researchers are not warning internet users to avoid Facebook, they are simply suggesting that users should take caution when associating their online world with real-life decisions.

James Kosur

James Kosur has worked in the new media space for the last 10 years, helping many publications build their audiences to millions of monthly readers. He currently serves as the Director of Business Development at Business2Community.com and the CEO of Aven Enterprises LLC.


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