For Once, It's the Father's Fault

childhood obesity, family health
Dad's weight is a predictor for his kids' weight.

Have a seat, Moms. A new study has found that for once, it might not be your fault. Or at least not entirely. Instead, researchers are pointing their fingers at dads.

A child obesity study, published this month in the International Journal of Obesity, concluded that children of men who are overweight might be at higher risk for obesity themselves. In fact, even if mom was obese, there was no increased risk of obesity for the child so long as dad was normal weight.

Well now!

Researchers noted back in 2004 the height and weight of the four- and five-year-olds in 3,285 Australian families.  In 2008, they noted height and weight increases. Parents recorded their own size stats and were grouped into three categories: healthy, overweight and obese.

The LA Times Booster Shots blog breaks the study down:

Having an overweight father and a healthy-weight mother increased the odds of the child becoming obese four years later by 318%. Having a father who was obese increased the odds to 1,388%. But having a healthy-weight father and an overweight or obese mother did not significantly predict that the child would be obese.

Having two overweight or obese parents also increased the risk for overweight or obese children.