Does Birth Weight Affect Childhood Obesity?

Does Birth Weight Affect Childhood Obesity?

With the recent increasing trend of childhood obesity and super-sized newborn babies, some people may begin to wonder whether these two factors are related. That is the increase of childhood obesity cases are caused by the increased birth weight of these super-sized babies. To tell you the truth, the answer may not be a simple yes or no, because birth weight will definitely influence the growth of a baby, but an obese child is not always born super big.

Generally, most doctors believe that babies who have birth weight of 12 pounds or over are usually born to mothers with untreated gestational diabetes. Women with untreated gestational diabetes usually have too much glucose in their bodies. During pregnancy, this high level of glucose will be passed on to the baby in the womb, which will result in the baby receiving too much glucose. The effect of receiving this high level of glucose for a prolonged period can be quite unhealthy for the baby. One the most common result is the baby will grow way beyond the normal newborn baby size. In general, babies whose weight at birth are heavier than 90 percent of other babies for the same age, are categorized as large for gestational age. Babies who fall under this category tend to stay large throughout childhood and adulthood.

Another interesting fact about obese pregnant women is that they tend to develop other health issues like diabetes or high blood pressure. Because of the various other complications that these health issues can cause, doctors are struggling to treat these serious cases. Actually, if not treated properly, these health issues may lead to premature births and low birth weight. This fact alone should open your eyes that childhood obesity is actually more influenced by the environment and lifestyle that the children experience.

All things being equal, generally speaking, obese women often deliver bigger than average babies. In turn, these babies born from obese mothers tend to keep their big size throughout their childhood and adulthood. Whether it is caused by genetic or environmental factors, the end result is usually the same. These babies will grow into children who tend to have higher risks for developing various long-term obesity related complications and health issues.

Latest statistical report from the Center of Disease Control shows that around 30 percent of adult Americans are obese, while more than 60 percent of adult Americans can be considered overweight. Considering these facts, it is logical to conclude that there will be many children born to obese parents. In the future, naturally, these children will also develop the tendency to become obese parents. Then, in turn these future obese parents will most likely give birth to obese babies. The cycle just keeps going from there.

Latest studies also show that babies who gain weight too fast in the first week of life may reset their biological systems which may result in them gaining weight too easily throughout their lifetimes. While we do not want to restrict our baby’s food intake, it is best to get some advice from your pediatrician regarding how much food you should feed your baby regularly.

As an experienced children nutritionist, Fiola is fond of little children. She enjoys working near children and has dedicated her life to the betterment of children all around the world. Recently she has launched a new site on best washing machines which provides washing machine reviews for you.

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