Ear Infections May Lead to Weight Gain

By Nora Simmons

It sounds crazy, and even a bit cruel, that those ear infections that made you miserable as a kid may have returned to haunt you in the form of fast-food cravings and persistent belly fat. But new research shows that people who suffered moderate to severe middle ear infections when they were young were 62 percent more likely to be obese at the time of the study. Researchers believe the taste-bud damage caused by frequent ear infections leads to a strong preference for sugary and fatty foods later in life—which, in turn, leads to weight gain. Previous studies have made the same connection between childhood tonsillectomies and obesity.