Children from wealthy families are more likely to grow up healthy than those in low-income families, according to a new study in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science. But growing up with a nurturing mother is the one thing that can offset living without higher-income parents.

Researchers from the University of British Columbia in Canada examined approximately 1,200 adults for the study and found that poor children were more likely to grow up to become unhealthy adults than those from high-income families. Participants with parents who did not graduate from high school were 1.4 times more likely to develop metabolic syndrome, which is linked with health problems such as heart disease and diabetes.

“But those greater risks later in life seem to be offset if the mom paid careful attention to the children’s emotional well-being, had time for them and showed affection and caring,” said lead author Gregory Miller.

Miller said there is evidence that nurturing moms or other adults “can help buffer vulnerable kids from all sorts of negative outcomes.”

Source: Chicago Sun Times

Heather Rudow is a staff writer for Counseling Today. Email her at hrudow@counseling.org.

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