Induction is social influence by alters on egos. For this study, 5124 participants were selected from the parent study. The study participants or respondents had a mean age of 38 years within the youngest being 21 years old. Women constituted 53% of the study participants while the range of the ages of the study participants was between 21 years old and 70 years old. Tracking sheets from the parent study were used to obtain important information on the social networks of the study participants. For example siblings, friends, and relatives that have been named by the study participant.
Many of the people named by the study participant as close relatives, friends, and family were also part of the parent study. This made it possible to get important information on the social networks. The Kanada Kawai algorithm software was used to develop and visualize the network. The Social Network Image Animator was used to generate videos of the network. The study found out that obesity spreads in social networks in patterns that are discernible and is dependent on the nature of social ties. The study further established that geographic distance is less important than social distance when it comes to spread of obesity within social networks.
It was also established that friends and siblings of the same sex were more likely to influence each other on gaining weight than by friends and siblings of different sex. This finding supported the belief that it is more likely for people or individuals to be influenced by people they resemble than by people they do not resemble. Alters could influence egos perception of obesity through a number of psychosocial means such as influencing the behavior of egos and influencing how the ego perceives obesity.
The study concluded that obesity spreads within social networks and that public health efforts to help an individual may spread to another person. Through this mechanism, public health efforts are likely to succeed in controlling spread of
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