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The Childhood Obesity Rumour

Rumour: A father’s poor eating habits before conception can result in obese or overweight children.

Truth: This is true.

Male reproductive health is not seen as an important consideration when it comes to pregnancy. A woman’s eating habits and diet is extremely impactful on the child’s health and growth. Healthy, fertile men have high-quality sperm unlike men with bad eating habits, men that smoke or drink excessively, men who are overweight and men with type 2 diabetes. A healthy diet and healthy eating habits are not only important for mothers, but for fathers as well.

Researchers in the United Kingdom conducted a study to examine the impact of a father’s eating habits on his children in the long-term. The results of this study was published in PNAS. A mouse model was used to complete this study. Researchers concluded that the mice fed a poor diet resulted in offspring more likely to be obese or overweight when compared to the mice fed a normal diet. As a result, a father’s poor diet before conception can result in obese or overweight offspring. Find out more about this study here.

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