Exploring Social Networks to Mitigate the Obesity Epidemic. James O. Hill, PhD Center for Human Nutrition University of Colorado Denver. www.relenet.com. What role do social networks play in promoting Obesity?. www.making-money-blogging.com. “Obesity appears to spread through social ties”.
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James O. Hill, PhD
Center for Human Nutrition
University of Colorado Denver
Chistakis and Fowler (2007)
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A hypothetical social network with each individual’s initial state colored as normal weight (green) or overweight (blue). At each time step, the individuals update their current state to reflect the majority of their network neighbors (including themselves). At time 2, for example, the central figure changes from normal weight to overweight because the majority of its neighbors were overweight.
Clustering of BMI shown for simulations with 10,000 individuals. Top panel, generation 5, bottom panel generation 100.
Dieting with friends of friends may be a more effective strategy than dieting with friends. (a) A single overweight individual is selected near the border of the cluster, and eight surrounding friends of friends are also selected (all shown in red). Each is pinned at the normal weight value (green). (b) After 40 time steps, the normal-weight cluster has expanded to enclose the dieting cohort.