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Debunking 'fat' neighborhoods

October 09, 2005|From the Chicago Tribune

If you choose to live in a way-out suburban subdivision, are you more likely to get fat? A number of planners, health officials and others have complained in recent years that sprawl discourages walking and, therefore, encourages obesity.

But two researchers from Oregon State University looked at the relationship between sprawl and neighborhood choice, based on residents' weight.

They concluded there's no real connection between living in the boonies and becoming overweight.

Rather, they determined that fit people choose to live in neighborhoods that allow them to walk to work or to shop, and heavy people prefer places where they need a car.

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