A new study has found that when grandparents were either the main caregiver or lived in the home with children, the children had a 30 percent increased risk in being overweight or obese.
The authors reviewed 23 studies across the globe and found the risk seemed to be present no matter where in the world the child lived.
The authors said grandparents can have a big influence on both daily diet -- for instance giving sweets and fried foods as a token of love or through physical activity -- being more likely to excuse a child from chores.
In West Virginia, about 21,000 grandparents are raising grandchildren.
The study was published online in the journal Childhood Obesity.
Appalachia Health News is a project of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, with support from Marshall Health and Charleston Area Medical Center.