We’ve talked a lot here at BabyPrepping.com about why eating right is so important during pregnancy and what eating for two really means so mothers are well aware of the impact their food choices have on their future child.
Lucky for fathers, they’re off the hook. They can eat whatever they want and not worry about impacting their future children…right?
Hold on. Not so fast, Dad!
I know we’ve heard about preconception diets for fathers, but their focus is usually on improving Dad’s fertility. What about how Dad’s diet could directly affect their unborn child? What about how fathers’ eating habits could affect those of their children?
Researchers from the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Metabolic Research recently reported in the medical journal Cell Metabolism:
“…the sperm cells in lean and obese men…possess different epigenetic marks that could alter the next generation’s appetite…” (source)
What does that mean, exactly? Ida Donkin, MD, one of the lead authors of the paper, explains:
“Today, we know that children born to obese fathers are predisposed to developing obesity later in life, regardless of their mother’s weight. It’s another critical piece of information that informs us about the very real need to look at the pre-conception health of fathers.”
Did you catch that, Dad? Regardless of their mother’s weight. Your child’s predisposition toward leanness or obesity can be impacted by you, not just Mom.
If you thought all you were passing on were unchangeable genetics like hair color, eye color, or your height it’s time to think again.
Traditional wisdom has long stressed the importance of a sacred preconception diet for both mothers and fathers, and not just for fertility but for a healthy, robust baby as well. It sounds like science may be finally catching up!