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Study Challenges Stereotypes About Obese Workers

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Overweight workers aren't lazier, more emotionally unstable, or more difficult to get along with than other workers, say U.S. researchers who examined the relationship between body weight and personality traits among 3,500 adults.

The findings, which contradict widely held perceptions, mean that employers should not use weight as a predictor of personality traits when it comes to hiring, promoting or firing people, said study author Mark Roehling of Michigan State University, United Press International reported.

"Previous research has demonstrated that many employers hold negative stereotypes about obese workers and those beliefs contribute to discrimination against overweight workers at virtually every stage of the employment process, from hiring to promotion to firing," Roehling said in news release.

The study was published in the journal Group & Organization Management.

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