A new study shows that children of divorce are more likely to be overweight than their counterparts who live in non-divorced homes. And while the study could not prove conclusively that the divorce itself is the actual cause, it did raise some questions about other factors that often do exist more in homes as parents try to negotiate the transition from two-parent to one-parent homes (thing like stress, less supervision, less time to cook nutritious meals).
The study was conducted in Norway. The researchers looked at approximately 3,000 third-grade children from 127 different schools. The study found that overall, among the entire body of 3,000 students, 19% of the children were overweight or obese, and about 9% were abdominally obese. However, the children of divorce were 54% more likely to be overweight or obese, and also were 89% more likely to have abdominal obesity than children whose parents stayed married.
Again, researches could not state emphatically that the parents’ marital status itself was the cause. Instead, the study opined about the impact of certain “vulnerabilities” that are more prevalent in divorcing homes – emotional stress, financial hardship, the shifting of attention away from health and meals to other issues, time pressures, changes in supervision and child-rearing structures, etc.
To learn more about the study, go to http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_146634.html
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Written by: Theresa A. Lyons, Esq.