A new study suggests overweight men are more likely to produce offspring with weight problems.
Scientists looked at mice that had grown obese after being given a high-fat diet. Their offspring were given healthy low-fat diets but still put on extra weight from six weeks of age.
The study showed altered activity levels in inherited genes that affect metabolism speeds between normal weight fathers and obese fathers and their children. In addition, there were also different patterns of body fat composition between the two weight groups.
Study leader, Dr Felicia Nowak from Ohio University explains “We’ve identified a number of traits that may affect metabolism and behavior of offspring dependent on the pre-conception diet of the father.”
The scientists believe the same effect can manifest in humans. Up until this point, research in the study of obesity and weight gain between parents and children focused solely on mothers and left fathers out of the equation.
According to HuffPost, “In the next phase of the study, the team will try to identify the genes responsible for the physiological and behavioral changes.”
The study’s results were presented at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society in San Francisco, US.
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