Study Provides More Info on Childhood Obesity
> 12/8/2005 3:35:00 PM

A study published in the December issue of Pediatrics examines "The Dynamics of Early Childhood Overweight."  The conclusions show that children of mothers who were overweight prior to pregnancy or who smoked during pregnancy may have a higher chance of becoming overweight at an early age.  The study also highlighted the fact that children who were overweight at an early age tended to remain overweight as they aged.

"A child who was overweight at ages 4 or 5 was going to be at minimum six times more likely to be overweight at ages 6 to 7, but a child could also move from not being overweight in the second time point to being overweight in the third time point, and that was associated to the prenatal weight of the mom," [Dr. Pamela J. Salsberry of Ohio State University] explained. "Children were almost three times more likely to become overweight at this last time point."

There are two main implications of this study for the clinical practice, according to Salsberry: It gives women of childbearing age an additional reason to think about their own weight status because it indicates that obesity is not only a risk for them but that it might also be a risk for their children. It should also raise awareness among pediatricians that obesity problems start when children are very young.

quotes courtesy of Reuters.

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