Researchers have confirmed what U.S. families have known for years - mothers who juggle work and kids have less time to cook, shop and play with their children than their stay-at-home counterparts.
The study, by Cornell University in New York, found mothers who don't do paid work spend 6.8 hours each day doing chores around the home and entertaining their little ones.
And while women who work a full-time job on top of being a mother spend less time cooking, shopping and playing, the activities still take up 4.6 hours of their busy day.
Unsurprising: Researchers have confirmed what U.S. families have known for years - mothers who juggle work and kids have less time to cook, shop and play with their children than their stay-at-home counterparts
This is because their employed partners devoted just 13 extra minutes to these jobs on days their wives at the office, according to John Cawley, the study's lead author.
Meanwhile, the non-working father contributed just 41 extra minutes a day to his children on days his wife worked a full-time shift.
Researchers analysed a sample of 24,902 women with at least one child under age 18. Cawley said the findings were the same whether the families were rich, poor, educated or from a variety of ethnic backgrounds.
Juggling: Women who work full-time still spend 4.6 hours doing household chores
He said the rise in households with both parents in paid work could help to explain the increase in child obesity. This is because time-poor mothers were significantly more likely to buy less nutritious pre-prepared or fast food.
But he insisted fathers had to cop the blame as well.
'It's inaccurate to pin rising childhood obesity rates on women, given that husbands pick up so little of the slack,' he said.
He added that while they spend less time with their kids and doing chores, they also spend less time on themselves than stay-at-home mothers.
'They spent 31 fewer minutes sleeping and less time watching TV, at leisure and socializing,' he said.
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