Study Finds Children of Divorce Struggle More with Obesity

Aurora family law, Illinois child custody attorney, divorce effect on children, Many studies have been done that prove a negative psychological effect of divorce on children. Most of these studies do not address the physical health issues of the children. However, a recent study reveals that children of divorce may experience negative physical effects to their health when their parents split. The study found that physical struggles children of divorce may deal with include excessive weight gain, leading to more physical problems later in life.

The study, conducted among 3,000 children in Norway, found that boys whose parents divorced were especially susceptible to excessive weight gain in the wake of their parents’ split. The research team found that boys had a 63 percent increased risk of being overweight or obese than boys whose parents’ marriages stayed intact.

While researchers did find an association between obese children and parents’ divorce, they cautioned that divorce was not pinpointed as an absolute cause of weight gain. It is far more likely that the lifestyle changes that accompany divorce resulted in the weight gain. The study also did not consider factors such as diet, exercise, and living arrangements.

Regardless, the study is a cautionary tale, especially in the United States, where obesity has quadrupled in teenagers and doubled in children in the past three decades. According to the Center for Disease Control, approximately one in three people born in the year 2000 in the U.S. will develop diabetes at some point in his or her life. This has been labeled a national health crisis. If children whose parents divorce are more likely to develop obesity—and subsequent diabetes—parents who are considering divorce should be especially aware and work to prevent weight gain in their children after the split.

If you or someone you know is considering divorce, the most important step is to seek the counsel of a legal professional.Contact a DuPage County family law attorney for a consultation about your case today.

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