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The Role of Parents in Child Obesity

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Obesity in children in the US and Canada is on the rise, and never ending because new parents or parents with experience, either way tend to ignore what is happening with their child. A study at UCSF tells us that “A child with one obese parent has a 50 percent chance of being obese. When both parents are obese, their children have an 80 percent chance of obesity.” When children are growing up, they tend to look up on their parents and do what their parents are doing, this is why it is asked to be a good role model because that is how kids learn. Kids are innocent that they don’t know whether it is correct to do or not. If the kids tend to copy their parents and their habits then it is quite clear that children tend to eat what their parents eat, there have been multiples of study based on that suggests how parenting majorly contributes to the growing obesity problem among young children. The US National Library of Medicine indicates that “children of heavier parents have been found to exhibit lower levels of physical activity and have a greater preference for high fat foods and lower preference for healthier foods.”

Parents are at fault for childhood obesity because it is the job of a parent is to teach a child right to wrong, which includes including their time to sleep, brushing their teeth’s, eating habits, physical activity, and their overall self-control behavior wise. If a child has no guidance or sense of direction from their parent to what to eat or not to eat and having the necessary physical activity needed, the child will have more difficulty contributing to their childhood and into their adulthood. While Dr. Joseph Galati tells in his article that “is that parents aren’t paying enough attention to what they feed their kids. Families aren’t eating enough home-cooked meals and parents aren’t serving healthy snacks.” Now this leads to income, and getting groceries. Are parents able to provide their kids with a better lifestyle? Are they always at work? All of these questions are left untouched. A study in California was conducted, and they were able to conclude with some points but I will share only one fact that “Teens whose parents drink soda every day are nearly 40 percent more likely to drink soda every day themselves than teens whose parents do not drink soda.” But it is true that childhood obesity often leads to obesity as an adult which can put a person at greater risks dealing with the heart, diabetes, and many other obese related diseases. People want to blame today’s technology for child obesity, in reality, the responsibility lies in the hands of their parents, whether they are going to teach real basketball with a hoop physically verses an iPad game, the thing with parents and people in general is that we look for an easy way to turn it around rather than going an extra step while the article Predicting Obesity in Young Adulthood from Childhood and Parental Obesity tells us that “prevention of obesity in childhood and effective treatment of overweight children are essential” otherwise the children will face health problems in the future.

I would say that Parents need to look what they feed their child, and if they are, they need to realize it would not benefit their health even if you are rewarding them for their behavior or marks, it is not how you should be trying to reward them, should be more balanced out rather than loads of ice cream. The thing ends off with for every parent whether they are new or experienced, teaching right habits can make for a long living healthy lifestyle.

If you raise a child on good habits how to behave, how to eat all the regular ethics, it will not be hard for them to follow in the same footsteps and continue that lifestyle into their adulthood. Most importantly, Parents should be a role model by eating well, exercising regularly, and building healthy habits into their own daily life.

Reference List

  1. Fuemmeler, B. F., Lovelady, C. A., Zucker, N. L., & Østbye, T. (2013, April). Parental obesity moderates the relationship between childhood appetitive traits and weight. Retrieved July 15, 2019, from
  2. Staff, L. S. (2009, February 09). Parents Blamed for Childhood Obesity. Retrieved July 15, 2019, from
  3. Predicting Obesity in Young Adulthood from Childhood and Parental Obesity: NEJM. (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2019, from
  4. Obesity. (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2019, from
  5. Childhood Obesity and Parent Responsibility. (n.d.). Retrieved July 15, 2019, from

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