Obesity Is Partly Hereditary
Obesity is partially handed down from parent to child, a new study confirms. The National Health Insurance Service analyzed 1.13 million medical check-up data and found that children with obese parents were 4.6 times more likely to be overweight than kids whose parents were not.
The obesity rate stood at 3.2 percent for children when both parents were not obese but at 14.4 percent when both parents were overweight. When the mother was obese, obesity among children stood at 8.3 percent, 1.3 times higher than when the father was obese (6.6 percent).
"It's usually mothers who feed their children, so a mother's obesity could have had a bigger impact," an NHIS researcher said.
In cases where both parents were obese, obesity among their children stood at a whopping 26.3 percent, compared to just 5.3 percent when neither parent was overweight.
Children with obese parents tended to watch long hours of TV or wolf their food down, suggesting that poor lifestyle habits are handed down by indolent parents.
The proportion of parents who said their children eat quickly stood at six percent among families where both mother and father were overweight but fell to 3.4 percent when parents were not. Some 43.6 percent of children who wolfed down their food and had overweight parents were obese.
Among children who watched more than two hours of TV a day and had overweight parents, the obesity rate stood at 16.8 percent, compared to only 2.8 percent among children who watched less and had slimmer parents.