Maternal obesity linked to overweight children

Research from European Congress on Obesity (ECO) in Glasgow, Scotland (28 April-1 May) reveals that the risk of a child becoming overweight or obese is more than trebled by maternal obesity prior to getting pregnant. The study is by Dr. Nicola Heslehurst, Institute of Health & Society, Newcastle University, UK, and colleagues.

Efforts to prevent childhood obesity are recognize as being vital for public health; global health, and clinical practice, with a particular emphasis on early-life intervention. But to inform clinical practice and public health policy; there is need to understand, how the body mass index (BMI); of a mother can impact the risk of obesity faced by the child. This in turn can provide estimates of the potential health; gains from channeling resources into early interventions focus on mothers to be.

BMI or equivalent z-score

Mothers were group using BMI categories; obese (BMI of 30 kg/m2 or higher), and overweight (BMI between 25 and 30). Children were group using BMI or z-score percentile categories: obese (95 %), overweight or obese (85 %) and overweight (85-95%). Statistical analyses were then perform to explore the relationship between maternal weight and that of their child.

The researchers found that when a mother had obesity prior to becoming pregnant; the odds of her child also developing obesity was 3.64 times greater than for a mother whose weight was in the ‘recommended’ BMI range (18.5-25). When mothers had an overweight BMI, the odds of the child having obesity were 1.89 times higher.

Either Overweight or Obesity

When the team look at children with either overweight or obesity (as a one combine group); they found that the odds of end up in this group were 2.69 and 1.65 times; higher when the mother have obesity or overweight respectively. For children in the; their odds of being so were 1.80 times higher if their mother had obesity; and 1.41 times higher if she had an overweight BMI prior to pregnancy.

This research has identify a more than obesity prior increase; risk of child obesity when mothers have preconception obesity. This data provides substantial evidence for the need to develop interventions commencing prior to conception in order to support women of childbearing age with weight management and contribute towards prevention of inter generational obesity.”