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As well, researchers found obese women are more likely to receive a lower starting salary than their non-overweight colleagues.
Researchers at the University of Manchester in England and Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, asked study participants to view a series of resumes that also had a small photo of the applicant attached. The participants were asked to rate the applicants on suitability, as well as what the job candidates should be paid to start.
The participants received a photo of each applicant either before or after their weight-loss surgery.
"We found that strong obesity discrimination was displayed across all job selection criteria, such as starting salary, leadership potential, and likelihood of selecting an obese candidate for the job," lead researcher Dr. Kerry O'Brien said in a release about the study.
The researchers also found the higher participants rated their own attractiveness and physical appearance, the more likely they were to discriminate against obese candidates.
"One interpretation of this finding might be that we feel better about our own bodies if we compare ourselves and discriminate against 'fat' people, but we need to test this experimentally," O'Brien said.
The study was published in the International Journal of Obesity.