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Gay men thinner than heterosexuals but lesbians heavier, study says

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  1. Whatever next “bears sh*t in the woods” by taxpayer funded study?

    1. Don’t dismiss the study unless you’ve read it, it’s actually valuable work. The media misreport science all the time usually because a) they aren’t academic and don’t have the patience to read and understand a journal article, b) they smell a story from the abstract and report on one limited aspect, bypassing the majority of the article.

    2. Maybe, but there are less bears to study from the looks of things.

  2. Kris Jones 8 Jun 2010, 3:51pm

    Since the survey only covered Massachusetts residents, it’s a bit heroic to claim that gay men generally are thinner and that lesbians tend more to be obese. It may not hold true for the US as a whole, but we certainly can’t draw any conclusions from this about the situation in the UK.

    1. Staircase2 7 Jun 2013, 5:08pm

      Well said

  3. Are we SERIOUSLY being compared to a group of car-buyers??!! Instead of ‘gay people need a specific, tailored message’, how about looking at the reasons behind these figures, what is the cause of such a high proportion of overweight lesbian women? For example, could it be linked with emotional anxieties associated with their sexuality?

    And I’m sorry, we’re fat, but we’re happy with that? Wrong. Very wrong.

  4. Michael Mason 8 Jun 2010, 5:50pm

    Delighted at the news! According to this research I’ve just lost two stone :)

  5. The Grinch 8 Jun 2010, 5:56pm

    Tell that to my fat ass…

  6. So whats the reccommendation, stop the gay men smoking so they will put on weight.

    And you leave bears alone, I happen to like them, a lot.

  7. As someone currently trying to squeeze 36 inches of waist into 34 inches of Levis waistband I’m wishing this was a genuine law of nature. Anyone for muffins?

  8. Sometimes it really is hard to dredge up even a flicker of interest in the results of yet another misguidedly-funded ‘study’. Christ, have people really got nothing more interesting to think about?

  9. Actually the research is better and more interesting than the report suggests, and is based on information from about two thousand people:

    | Conron, K. J., Mimiaga, M. J. & Landers, S. J.
    | A population-based study of sexual orientation
    | identity and gender differences in adult health.
    | Am J Public Health AJPH.2009.174169+ (2010).
    | URL http://dx.doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2009.174169.
    |
    | Objectives. We provide estimates of several leading
    | US adult health indicators by sexual orientation
    | identity and gender to fill gaps in the current
    | literature.
    |
    | Methods. We aggregated data from the 2001–2008
    | Massachusetts Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance
    | surveys (N=67359) to examine patterns in
    | self-reported identity and gender, using
    | multivariable logistic regression.
    |
    | Results. Compared with heterosexuals, sexual
    | minorities (i.e., gays/lesbians, 2% of sample;
    | bisexuals, 1%) were more likely to report activity
    | limitation, tension or worry, smoking, drug use,
    | asthma, lifetime sexual victimization, and HIV
    | testing, but did not differ on 3-year Papanicolaou
    | tests, lifetime mammography, diabetes, or heart
    | disease. Compared with heterosexuals, bisexuals
    | reported more barriers to health care, current
    | sadness, past-year suicidal ideation, and
    | cardiovascular disease risk. Gay men were less
    | likely to be overweight or obese and to obtain
    | prostate-specific antigen tests, and lesbians were
    | more likely to be obese and to report multiple
    | risks for cardiovascular disease. Binge drinking
    | and lifetime physical intimate partner
    | victimization were more common among bisexual
    | women.
    |
    | Conclusions. Sexual orientation disparities in
    | chronic disease risk, victimization, health care
    | access, mental health, and smoking merit increased
    | attention. More research on heterogeneity in health
    | and health determinants among sexual minorities is
    | needed.

    The news story of course completely messes up by misreporting the results in the manner “X people are thinner” instead of “fewer X people are obese”, which obscures probable variations amongst “X people” that lead to the differences. Such as, perhaps, some ultra body conscious gay men, or PCOS or transgenderism amongst those listed as lesbian. And then it invisibilises the findings on bisexual women.

    1. Staircase2 7 Jun 2013, 5:11pm

      When you said ‘interesting’ I had high hopes…then you cut and pasted it

      Why exactly is it that academic information is so badly presented so as to make the reading of it so much hard work and so boring as to turn ANYONE off…let alone Journalists…

      There is ABSOLUTELY no reason why those stats could not be presented in a properly legible way…

  10. Tim Hopkins 9 Jun 2010, 7:39am

    Thanks very much oatc – it is vitally important that research is done to demonstrate the different health needs of LGBT people (this research does not seem to have covered trans people).

    As you say, the story is not a good report of this research.

  11. pete the meat 9 Jun 2010, 4:04pm

    Interesting. I think its all down to the fact we eat meat but don’t swallow… though I would if asked nicely!

    1. Please :-)

  12. but … no1 cares

    but now i feel fat

  13. And what about Bi peoiple?!

  14. Carmen: “And what about Bi people?!
    They just stick to the semi-skimmed, apparently. ;)

  15. Petunia sweeties 7 Jun 2013, 12:53am

    Sounds like the old joke….
    Q “what would the world be like if there were no men?”
    A “Full of fat, happy women”

  16. Enrique Esteban 7 Jun 2013, 7:23am

    PLS, SIGN TO SUPPORT GAY MARRIAGE IN ROMANIA:
    http://www.petitieonline.com/vrem_parteneriat_civil_in_romania
    Help to sign: prenume=first name; nume=family name; oras=city; tara=country.
    You’ll receive a mail and have to click on 2nd link to confirm.

  17. Frank Boulton 7 Jun 2013, 4:10pm

    I don’t want to sound as if I’m belittling the results of this research. I mean you’ve got to start somewhere and it may just as well be Masschusetts as anywhere else. But when they get round to taking us gay guys in Palmerston North into account, I bet we’ll tip the balance. LOL.

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