A study conducted by researchers in the UK has found that women and young adults were more likely to gain weight during Covid-19 induced lockdowns.

The researchers analysed data available from 938,000 adults to study the impact of lockdowns on the physical heath of people in the UK in March 2020 and the year that followed.. It found that the pandemic led to 14 percent of people becoming overweight or obese.

The study added that most people, however, managed to maintain the same weight or did not move into another body mass index (BMI) category during the aforementioned period.

Women were 44 percent more likely than men to become obese. Out of the total number of participants, 13 percent of overweight women became obese compared with 9 percent of men. It further stated that those under the age of 45 were more likely to gain weight and move into a new weight "category."

Young adults were also more than twice as likely than older people to gain weight, the study revealed. According to the experts involved in the research, the pandemic hit men and women differently because men faced less disruptions in their daily routine unlike women.

"I suspect lockdown had a differential impact on many women's lives compared to men. Men pretty much carried on as they were, they just worked from home instead," said Professor Thomas Yates of Leicester University, who worked on the research.

"Whereas those school runs, supermarket shops or things that are potentially getting women out of the house more often suddenly stopped. And then you have to deal with home-schooling kids and a very different way of living, which was probably quite stressful," he said.

However, the experts emphasised that more studies need to be conducted to understand the reasons behind the change in body weights during lockdown years.

The study, which was conducted by the experts from University of Leicester, UK and Leicester General Hospital, is being presented at the European Congress on Obesity in the Netherlands, according to a report in The Independent.

About 27% of the world's population is overweight or obese, a new study finds. ROBYN BECK,RONALDO SCHEMIDT,PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images