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Scientists Are Blaming Working Mums For The UK’s Child Obesity Epidemic

Scientists Are Blaming Working Mums For The UK’s Child Obesity Epidemic

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A new study of 20,000 families by University College London, has negatively linked mothers who work – to the weight of their children – claiming that their kids eat more and move less.

The findings show that children of mums who work are the most negatively affected, in contrast to the father’s employment status, which apparently has no “significant effect.”

Professor Emla Fitzsimons was interviewed by The Sunday Times and said:

“We find that children whose mothers work are more likely to have increased sedentary behaviour and poorer dietary habits.”

Scientists stated that the negative results were more obvious with single mums who work full-time, but not exclusively. The study also revealed a pattern with mums who work and have a partner.

The research later concluded that it doesn’t really matter if mothers work full-time or part-time; their child is still more likely to be ‘fatter’ than that of a stay at home (non-working) mum.

The paper states that obesity is: “the most common chronic disease of childhood and likely to persist into adulthood with far-reaching effects”.

Furthermore, it found that teenagers and children have gained weight over the last 40 years, in parallel to the rise in working mums – with children of single working mothers 25% more likely to be overweight.

It’s suggested that kids of mums who work full-time, are 29% less likely to eat a regular & healthy breakfast, and are 19% more likely to have screen time for more than 3 hours a day.

In rounding this new bit of research off, the paper states that with the burden remaining on mothers, father’s should be more “active players” in supporting their child’s well-being.

We’re certainly not convinced by this ‘new research’ and would wholly support the notion that mums and dads, both working and non-working should be responsible for the food they give their children. Working mums shouldn’t be used as a scape goat in this way.

According to the Government, the generations coming through are becoming obese at earlier ages, and staying obese for longer.

Just to clarify, The Dadsnet does not agree with pointing the finger at working mums and fundamentally disagrees with the report that was released.

What are your thoughts on this?

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  1. Rebecca @Hamilton Billiards

    Great post, and i agree with some of your points too. Can’t wait to read more from you.

  2. Jordan

    Cooking a cheap healthy meal is doable every night. I don’t see how we can blame working parents? I think as the new generations have come in less people are able too cook a proper meal. It’s become too easy to feed them and us with unhealthy ready meals, snacks and take aways but a good cheap meal might only take 30mins to cook! Quicker than getting a take away delivered.

  3. NeilE

    So nothing to do with junk food being so cheap compared to healthy food. Also nothing to do with less and less safe places for kids to go and play, coupled with the ease of access to games consoles/TVs and no real reason to “go out and play” due to aforementioned safe play places and alternatives.

    I’ve not read the (scientific) paper but this is poor reporting from The Times, sensationalist in fact, which surprises me.

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