A team of researchers from Northwestern Medicine in Evanston, Illinois has conducted a new study and found that men who become fathers gain about 4 pounds on average, while men who don’t have children lose weight.
The results of the study were published in the American Journal of Men’s Health.
According to the researchers, this is the first study of its kind that examined the effects fatherhood has on the body mass index (BMI) of the men who become fathers. The study involved following more than 10,000 men for 20 years. The men had their body mass index measured during their teenage years, late teenage, mid 20s and early 30s.
Dr. Craig Garfield, researcher at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, explained that the health of young men can be affected by fatherhood. He added that the more weight the young fathers gain and the higher their body mass index becomes, the higher the risk of developing certain health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
After analyzing their data, the scientists found that an average man of about 6 feet high who lives with his child can gain about 4.4 pounds in his first months of fatherhood, while the body mass index goes up by 2.6%. The results of the study also revealed that recent fathers who don’t live with their kids gain an average of 3.3 pounds and their BMI rises by 2%.
The scientists found that the average man who was not a father lost about 1.4 pounds. While examining the results of the study, the researchers took into account all the factors that lead to weight gain, such as age, race, income, education, daily activity, marriage and screen time.
Dr. Garfield explained the reason why fatherhood makes men gain weight saying that when one has kids he has to deal with new responsibilities, which leaves less time for taking care of their own body and health. This means that married fathers have less time to do the exercises they did before becoming fathers. The family becomes the number one priority, said the researchers.
Dr. Garfield said that it’s very important for pediatricians to talk to the fathers about their kids’ and their own health and needs. The scientists believe a man’s transition to fatherhood is a very important stage in a man’s life that could a great impact in someone’s life and health.
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