Could Children of Divorced Parents Face Obesity Issues?

When a Maryland couple is undergoing a divorce and a child is involved, the best interest of the child will be a paramount concern. Not only can divorce take its toll on parents, but custody disputes and other aspects of separation can affect children negatively. Indeed, one recent study showed that children — especially boys — have a higher propensity for obesity if their parents are divorced.

The study, which was conducted by researchers in Europe, revealed that children of divorced parents had a 50 percent higher likelihood of being overweight. Even more, the children of divorced parents were more likely to be overweight than the children of parents that were never married. Even after researchers adjusted the figures to account for other popular child obesity contributors — like lack of education in parents — children whose parents were divorced still had a higher likelihood of being overweight.

The results proved even truer for boys. When zeroing in on male children, they had a 63 percent higher chance of being overweight if their parents have split up. Nevertheless, researchers admit that there is no clear way to tell if it is the divorce itself that is making these children gain extra weight. One interpretation offered is that divorce can lead to poorer economic conditions for parents. Poorer economic conditions, in turn, can result in a higher chance of childhood obesity.

Although researchers did not wish to speculate too extensively on why children are more obese, they do confirm a strong connection between the two. For this reason, Maryland parents going through a divorce may wish to take special care to ensure that their children’s emotional, nutritional, and physical needs are met in their entirety. It can be difficult post-divorce, and child custody disputes can be stressful and emotionally draining. However, parents can still do their best to ensure their children receive all the love and care they deserve.

Source: Time, “Boys of Divorced Parents Twice as Likely to Be Obese” Belinda Luscombe, Jun. 04, 2014