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New study from School of Management at the University of Bath discovers that men tend to gain weight after being married, moreover, the early days of fatherhood add on to the problem.

A higher Body Mass Index (BMI) has been found from married men than their non-married counterparts by approximately three pounds or 1.4kg to the scales, the research reveals.

While no BMI effect on male has been found while their wife becomes pregnant, study shows that men gain weight in the early years after childbirth.

The results clear up the confusion of competing theories put forward by social scientists linking BMI to marital status. It underlines the idea that non-married people who are seeking marriage have higher motivation to stay fit and make more effort as compared to those married counterparts.

It also supports the theory that marriage leads to other social factors such as richer foods, or more regular meals for men; while highlighting the concept that married couples have better physical health due to increased social support.

Between 1999 and 2013, the study of heterosexual couples in the US used statistics from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics and is published in the journal Social Science and Medicine.

Business Economist in the School of Management, Dr Joanna Syrda, said: “It's useful for individuals to understand which social factors may influence weight gain, especially common ones such as marriage and parenthood, so that they can make informed decisions about their health and well-being. For married men who want to avoid BMI increases that will mean being mindful of their own changing motivation, behaviour and eating habits.

“Given major public health concerns about obesity, understanding more about the social science factors that can cause weight fluctuation is important.”

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