Researchers suspect that taking your shoes off, getting rid of carpets and dusting can prevent chemicals building up that may affect our hormones – and our waistlines. But is it good science?

With 26% of adults classified as obese in the UK in 2016, the hunt for causes and solutions to expanding waistlines is on. While public health messages have focused largely on the food we eat, some scientists suspect there is another factor at play: substances being dubbed as “obesogens” – found in our packaging, household goods and furnishings that might affect our hormones and the buildup of fat in the body.

However, experts are sceptical, particularly in the light of one report this week. It has made the bold claim that “removing shoes when entering the house and swapping carpet for wooden floors could help people stay slim”, citing a talk by researchers at the universities of Aveiro and Beira Interior in Portugal, who have suggested that preventing obesogens accumulating in the house by frequently sweeping and dusting could stop us gaining weight.

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Read More The truth about obesogens: can dust and chemicals make you fat?

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