Does Parenting Increase Chances of Obesity?

Being a Parent Increases Weight

Being a parent increases weight gain over the course of an adult’s life, a new study by researchers at the University of Texas, Austin, found.

The study, which will be published in Social Science and Medicine, found that adults with children gain significantly more weight than those without children. Lead researcher Debra Umberson and her team studied the body mass index levels among 3,617 adults over the course of 15 years. They found that adults with children had BMI levels in the obese zone by the time they were 55, while those without children only measured as overweight at that age.

Umberson points out that lifestyle changes that come with parenthood, such as decreased exercise time and a drop in substance abuse in men, influence the weight gain. However, she also found that men gain more weight than women while living with a child, while women gain more when raising more than one child.

Have your say