10 Things We've Learned About Dads

In honor of Fathers Day, Smithsonian has rounded up some research on fathers and fatherhood that has surfaced in the past year. Some of it is common sense, although it’s nice to have common sense confirmed scientifically, but there are some findings that we may have never considered before.

1) Do the dishes. It’s for your daughter:  Dads who want their daughters to aspire to prestigious careers should make a point of handling more chores around the house. That’s the suggestion of a study published in the journal Psychological Science, which concluded that when a father helps out a lot at home, his daughters are more likely to break out of the mold of traditionally female jobs and instead seek more high-powered careers. Researchers at the University of British Columbia said they found that girls raised in homes where chores were shared evenly between both parents tended to have broader career goals.  

2) Finally, a reason to eat brussel sprouts: It’s not just pregnant women who need to eat healthy for the benefit of their offspring, According to a study at McGill University in Canada.  it’s important for prospective fathers to load up on vegetables with folates, such as spinach, sprouts and broccoli, says a recent study based on mice.  If a father's folic acid level is too low when he and his partner conceive, he may increase the risk that the child will have abnormalities.  It’s long been recommended that women boost their folic acid level during pregnancy, and now, it may turn out that men need to do the same before trying to conceive.

There’s more at Smithsonian. Some of these studies may apply to you or someone you love, at Smithsonian.

(Image credit: Flickr user Daria)

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