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Are you sick of hearing about the dadbod trend? Well, too bad, because we now have a scientific evidence that explains why many dudes eventually let themselves go. And it turns out, it’s more than just shitty eating habits and consistent laziness. It’s mostly due to fatherhood.
According to a report published by the American Journal of Men’s Health, becoming a dad greatly increases your chance at becoming fatter.
Researchers at Northwestern University conducted the study over a 20-year time span, tracking over 10,000 men and their body mass indexes (BMI). Within those two decades, it was revealed that men who became fathers experienced notable weight gain (regardless of race, income, education, and marital status), while their childless counterparts actually lost weight.
"Fatherhood can affect the health of young men, above the already known effect of marriage," the study’s lead author, Dr. Craig Garfield, said in a press release. "The more weight the fathers gain and the higher their BMI, the greater risk they have for developing heart disease as well as diabetes and cancer."
The study discovered that a 6-foot-tall first-time father who lives with his kid gained an average of 4.4 pounds. A 6-foot-tall dad who doesn’t live with his child gained about 3.3 pounds. And a 6-foot-tall childless man lost 1.4 pounds over the same time period.
Obviously, when you become a dad, your priorities change. It’s no longer all about you, and it’s easy to slack on the health and fitness when you’re faced with the pressure of caring for another life. However, fathers who fail to make health a priority might actually be hurting their little ones who may pick up their crappy lifestyle habits.
So, the lesson to be learned here? Find a balance, guys. You don't have to spend hours in the gym or stress about your macros all day every day; but you should make an effort to take care of yourself. If not for you, then for your kids.