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Connection with Divorce and Childhood Obesity

Posted on in Divorce

children of divorce, childhood obesity, life after divorce, parenting, Illinois divorce attorneyParents who divorce often worry about their children’s well being throughout the process and after the family is split up. It is undoubtedly a challenging time for children and their parents. A new article suggests that one of the things parents should add to their list of concerns when they divorce is whether their child will struggle with excessive weight gain.

Children’s Weight Gain after Divorce

New research is suggesting that children of divorced parents often struggle with weight gain when their parents part ways. A study was done of 3,000 kids in Norway in the third grade, which found that boys were especially prone to weight gain in connection with their parents’ divorce. the study found that boys of divorced parents had a 63 percent higher chance of being classified as either obese or overweight than boys whose parents were married. The same group was found to have a 104 percent higher chance of being abdominally obese.

The researchers said that it was critical to understand the risks and factors associated with childhood obesity in order to prevent it. They were careful to say that the study did not prove divorce caused the children to be obese or overweight, but that is does prove an association. It is important to note that the study did not include variables for how long parents had been divorced, or lifestyle habits like diet and exercise.

Developed nations more commonly see child obesity and divorce. According to the CDC, the statistics for obesity in children and teens has more than doubled and quadrupled, respectively, over the last 30 years. The concern with childhood obesity includes the fact that these children will be more prone to serious health problems, like heart disease and diabetes, when they are older.

Reasons for the Extra Pounds

Children of divorced parents could gain weight for a number of reasons. Less supervision at home and family stress may be contributors. Divorced families may turn to coping behaviors like emotional eating and decreased activity. In addition, a newly single parent may be struggling to manage schedules and not find the time to prepare healthy meals, but may turn to unhealthy convenience items to serve. Parents who only have their child once or twice a week may see it as an opportunity to indulge them.

Instead, parents should try to avoid unhealthy habits and ensure their kids are receiving proper nutrition and getting exercise. Having a normal routine is beneficial, as is eating together as a family.

Child Custody Attorney

The breakdown of a family is difficult for everyone involved. If you are considering divorce and have child custody concerns, the attorneys at Davi Law Group, LLC can discuss your case with you. Please feel free to contact us today to schedule a consultation. Our offices are located in Chicago, Wheaton, and Warrenville.

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