New Study: Kids' Weight Increases When Mom Works
KREX News Room
Grand Junction - As if working moms don't already have enough on their plate, a new study finds mothers who work are more likely to raise overweight kids. That's according to a study in the Journal of Child Development. It suggests the length of a mother's employment is associated with an increase in her child's body mass index.
Melissa Rogers is a working mom who tries to keep her kids eating healthy even when they're on the run.
"I just try to offer them as many things as I can as far as vegetagbles and fruit," Rogers said.
But the Rogers aren't the norm. According to a new study, the children of working moms are at an increased risk of being overweight or obese. Researchers looked at 900 children and found that children's body mass index increased the more years their moms worked.
"Many times, a working parent will find that our food choices might lean more toward convenient types of food," Christina Bybee, a registered dietician with Community Hospital, said.
One in three kids is overweight or obese, which can lead to other serious health issues, and even behavior and academic problems.
"If we eat more calories than we need they're going to be stored as fat," Bybee explained.
Bybee cautions against the convenience of fast food. "With fast food, you'll tend to choose foods that are higher in fat, higher in calories, and sodium," she said.
The ensure a balanced diet for her kids, Rogers plans meals in advance. "We have to do a lot of planning with meals before hand and going to the grocery store on the weekend when we do have time," Rogers said.
The mother's workload isn't the only thing leading to childhood obesity, other factors include kids' sleep patterns and the kind of food and activity they're getting at school.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 70% of mothers with young children work in the U.S.