Children born to fathers who are overweight are more likely to develop obesity when they are older than other children of their age.
On the other hand, an overweight or obese mother makes little difference to the chances of her child developing weight problems.
A study of more than 3,000 families by researchers at the University of Newcastle, Australia found that 4-year-olds whose fathers were overweight or obese were at least four times more likely than other children to have weight problems by the time they were eight.
The research used data from more than 3,000, two-parent families, who were tracked from 2004 to 2008.
"We know that when both parents are overweight or obese, their children are more likely to also be overweight or obese," Fox News quoted researcher Emily Freeman as saying.
"This project investigated patterns in families and tracked children from ages 4 to 8, where only one parent was overweight or obese," she said.