Based on age, are gay men generally fitter than the general population?

Looking through photos of my 25 year high school reunion I notice that most people have gained (lots of) weight, but the guys I know who are gay still look young and fit. I’ve also noticed that as well with my Facebook friends. The gay men I know seem fitter and they are usually surrounded by fit people in the pictures they post. I also have two friends who were married and later came out as gay. They have since lost a lot of weight and look much better than before.

I know that there’s a lot of variation and not all gay men are fit, but as a group it seems like they are generally much fitter than other men their age. I can’t say that I’ve noticed the same for women. I haven’t noticed any big difference in fitness between straight and lesbian women.

Is this just anecdotal or is there a higher correlation between gay men and fitness?

There’s definitely a stereotype that gay guys are fitter than the average man. If there’s truth it in, I suspect it’s mostly because humans generally emulate the qualities they admire and men tend to be visually oriented.

My other theory is that kids bring fatness and gay couples never accidentally end up with kids.

Probably not according to the study (said to be the first of its kind) referenced in this article. The study included both women and men, so definitive conclusions about gay men can’t be drawn from that data.

Certainly used to be true, back when gay men couldn’t partner up and had to be constantly competing ‘in the marketplace.’ (Though wealth or power could take the place of body fittness, sometimes, for a certain class of partner. Just as happens with older, wealthy men and younger women – look at Donald Trump’s series of wives, for example.)

The availability of same-sex marriage to gay men may change this. In the future, this subject may have to be subdivided into married vs. single gay men. Just like there are probably body fitness differences between married straight men vs. eligible bachelors.

Past thread. In t[here](Males: Gay 23.2; Straight 30.7; Bisexual 25.4
Females:Gay 35.9; Straight 28.8; Bisexual 40.4) I posted this link demonstrating these obesity rates in the 18 to 64 year old group:

Males: Gay 23.2; Straight 30.7; Bisexual 25.4
Females:Gay 35.9; Straight 28.8; Bisexual 40.4

So yes, obesity much less likely among gay than among straight males. They also are more likely to exercise regularly.

Gay men have the highestincidence of HIV infections, so I would guess no.

As it is, even ignoring that, a gay man who has a bad family history of heart disease (say), is no less likely to avoid getting it himself then a straight man.

But, according to the link I referenced above, gay and bisexual people are also much more likely to smoke and binge drink than straight people. Part of the issue is defining “fitter”. If it only means “less incidence of obesity”, then maybe so (where have all the bears gone;)?). If it means all around healthier, probably not so much.

The op referenced how much weight and looking better as “fit” … not fit as “healthier” per se. But yes, confirmed in what I linked to as well: more likely to be current smokers and to have had more than 5 drinks in a day within the past year. Also more like to self-describe their health as excellent or very good.

No data that I know of on life expectancy but I would bet you are right that smoking swamps the weight issues.

Right. This is just based on visual appearances. Now that I and my friends are in their 50’s, it’s a lot more evident who looks old vs young. Of the people in my age group, the gay men I know generally seem to look younger and fitter than other people their same age. Whether or not they are actually healthier I don’t know, but just on appearances they seem to have kept in better physical shape than most people.

Ceteris paribus, a fat guy has a much greater likelihood of developing heart disease than a skinny guy. So assuming DSeid’s statistics are accurate (and I see no reason to doubt them), gay men will be less prone to heart disease. That is probably offset to some degree by higher rates of tobacco and alcohol use.

Looking more all I can find on life expectancy is very old and likely very out of date.

But as mentioned, higher rates of STDs including AIDS and Hepatitis B and C (on average more partners and anal receptive sex is risky for transmission), let alone the impacts of homophobia and the possibly connected significantly increased rates of drug abuse (heroin inclusive), are also of significant impact when measuring the demographic.

The gay men I know (which is many) often speak to me of how they feel under pressure to keep ‘looking good’ in order to attract other men.