Grandparents accused of spoiling kids with too many treats. But we are not standing for it!

Grandparents may think they are being kind when they bring out the biscuit tin or serve up second helpings of a hearty home-cooked meal.

Chances are their grandchildren will also love them for the extra treats when they visit.

But spoiling the younger generation may not be doing them any good, according to academics, shares Daily Mail.

Grandparents may be going a bit overboard, as children looked after by their grandparents were found to be more overweight.

A study of more than 15,000 children aged three found those most often looked after by their maternal grandmother were 20 per cent more likely to be on the chubby side.

An academic review of 56 studies suggests that when the older generation ‘demonstrate their love’ with goodies and extra portions, grandchildren’s health may be suffering.

The review, led by the University of Glasgow, says: ‘For weight-related studies, grandparents were characterised by parents as indulgent, misinformed and as using food as an emotional tool within their relationships with grandchildren.’

The review, published in the journal PLOS One, looked at studies across 18 countries.

It found parents believed grandparents fed their children food too high in sugar and fat.

While home-cooked meals made from scratch were welcome, grandparents stood accused of ‘overfeeding’ children.

People are outraged at the Granny shaming!

A poll on TODAY Facebook page asking if people think Grandma is making kids fat has sparked debate with the majority of people replying NO!

Comments include:

– “FFS, what a load of crap!!!! These so called experts just point the finger to make it look like they’re doing their job. Grandparents have been doing this for centuries (probably worse than today’s grandparents) but for some reason the children of today are more obese.”

– “This is not true for the generation today, do kids even get off their electronic devices long enough to visit their nana? Now if it were the generation I grew up in then I’d probably have to agree.”

– “What a lot of crock! Fast food and lazy parents are what makes kids fat not grandparents…. no kfc no MacDonalds no hungry jacks when we grew up! Milkshakes and local fish and chip shop was a Friday night treat… and home made biscuits.”

– “You are kidding me? So what they are eating the rest of the time has no bearing on it at all? A biscuit or cake tin was normal generations ago…usually home made…and a treat. ”

While another said what happens at grans house stays at grans house!

I always loved our visits to nan. But I can understand that today quite often grandparents are one of the main carers for children while mum and dad work. So obviously in that case daily treats aren’t good.

Do your parents spoil the kids?

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  • Do I think Grandma is making kids fat these days? No – that would be the hidden sugar laced in most foods by giant corporations.


  • Weren’t they carrying on last week about how grandparents thought parents were spoiling their kids too much? If you’re worried about how many snacks the grandparents give your kids then say something. If they don’t listen then limit how much they see the kids. They will cotton on pretty quickly that you are the parent and the boss.


  • Our parents live in Europe, so our kids didn’t see their grandparents in years.
    It’s the parents that feed their kids and fill the kids lunchboxes and when I look to the lunchboxes these days, I think it’s packed with a lot of junk (crisp, chips, crackers, cookies, cupcakes, lollies, chocolate, juices, muesli bars, white breads and what more), adding the breakfast cereals (highly processed and containing lots of sugar) it’s not strange that kids now a days are more obese.
    Also we’re more wealthy these days and have more access to food. Sometimes kids want to eat all the time and we have to teach them they don’t have to eat all the time.


  • Everything in moderation, including moderation, is what my grandfather used to say. If a child has a balanced diet and eats healthy main meals, including whilst with grandparents, then how is the biscuit tin a problem?

    Maybe the issue isn’t the biscuit, maybe it’s the activity levels? When we were at our grandparents as kids we were kicked outside to play. Over 50% of our day was on play equipment in their yard or helping with gardening or farm chores (collecting eggs, feeding calves). We earned that biscuit.

    So, I wonder if parents are dropping kids to grandparents with digital devices and is it the big picture lifestyle factors that actually make the extra treats a problem?

    Back to my grandfather’s saying though, if grandparents aren’t giving treats in moderation, then maybe parents need to have their kids visit them in moderation instead!?!


  • I feel quite the opposite! As the generations progress, more and more is learnt of the good and bad foods for kids, and with each generation, a higher awareness of the dangers/complications/etc is passed through the family. I don’t believe grandparents spoil their grandchildren nowadays but more so encourage them to eat regular and healthy alternatives.

    • This is our experience too – healthy eating with sometimes treats.


  • No grandparents around so I don’t know if they would have spoiled their granddaughter or not.


  • Not our experience at all – treats are just treats.


  • Grandparents are often very unwilling to respect parental wishes around things like food.


  • Grandparents do spoil the young ones when they visit but l don’t believe it makes them fat!


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