Children whose parents have divorced are more likely to be obese, new research suggests.

Boy are especially prone to having excess weight, the study found.

Youngsters whose parents were divorced were 54 per cent more likely to be overweight or obese than children whose parents were married, according to the research published in the journal BMJ Open.

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Boys from broken homes were found to be 63 per cent more likely to be overweight or obese compared to boys whose parents were still married.

The researchers said possible explanations for the link could include lower household income, an over-reliance on convenience foods and less time spent on cooking, and the emotional fall-out of a divorce.

The research involved 3166 eight-year-old pupils in 127 primary schools in Norway.