My mom and I both devour research on weight loss and obesity. A few weeks ago, she pointed me to a study that said a poor relationship with your mother can lead to weight troubles as teens. She apologized in advance and said she would feel guilty if I struggled with my weight. I told her just the fact that we were having this conversation meant she wouldn’t be the cause.
A day later another study came out saying that a father’s work schedule can influence a child’s weight. I sent the link to my mom, noting that if I got fat she could just blame my traveling dad (he actually didn’t travel when I was young, but does now…so yeah).
The studies while looking at separate emotional issues bring up an interesting point—focusing on the role a parent has on a child’s nutrition. Since the parent, whether a mother or father, makes most of the decisions about meals their stress can influence that decision.
I still say it comes down to educating parents on how to make healthy choices, even when pressed for time. Meal planning, knowing which restaurants have the best options and making family time to be active together are the best places to start.
Growing up I was lucky enough to have a good relationship with both parents. My father was my basketball coach and my mother always made it a point to be supportive no matter what. So hopefully I have a little extra defense against weight gain.