How A Parent's Obesity Can Have Negative Health Effects On Children

By Henry Tyler, Parent Herald January 03, 09:01 pm

It is a well-known fact that being overweight adversely affects one's health but a recent study shows that not only the overweight person has to suffer but at times, the children of obese parents can also be at risk. Such children might show retardation in their development.

This is alarming since around 25 percent of adults in the United States are obese. The research was carried out on obese parents and their children and it was concluded that the effects are dependent on the parent who was heavier, according to CBS Local.

These children were reported to find it harder to use their muscles, for example, those in their fingers and hands, compared to the children of underweight or normal mothers. Children of obese parents were also said to perform poorer on problem-solving tests than other kids because their parents were already too busy in taking care of themselves and also because of difficulty in their social situations.

To track these results, parents in New York were regularly required to fill out questionnaires about the performance and health of their children. These surveys and questionnaires were highly beneficial to identify any anomalies. 

Not only on humans but these studies were conducted on animals as well. It was then found that inflammation caused by pregnancy in animals affected the brain of the fetus. It was further inferred that obesity disrupts the concentrations and production of various hormones, which directly affect the fetal brain. As CNN News says, even though these findings are not final or supported by other experiments yet, it is generally believed that a healthy weight should be maintained at all times to reduce any potential health risks.

Meanwhile, the study was published in the journal, Pediatrics. Lead researcher Edwina Yeung of Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development said their findings also suggest that a father's weight also has "significant influence on child development."

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