Mom's obesity during conception may cause child's obesity risk

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Washington, Jan 5 (UNI) Pregnant women who are obese may increase their child's obesity risk, a new study shows.

The study showed obese pregnant women are more likely to have heavier babies.

The risk of overweight children becoming obese adults is nearly nine times greater than for children who are not overweight.

Studies suggests that greater body-weight at birth and weight gain early in life increases the risk of becoming overweight or obese as an adult.

A child's body mass index (BMI) correlates more closely with the mother's BMI than with it's father's, suggesting that an interaction of both genetic and intrauterine influences, may contribute to later-life obesity risk in the offspring, the study says.

The findings by the researchers from the USDA-Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center add to the existing evidence showing that both maternal obesity and genetic background influence offspring's susceptibility to obesity, the Science Daily reported.

''The mother's body composition at conception has important implications for the metabolism and risk of obesity in the offspring in later years,'' stated Dr Kartik Shankar of the Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center.

''Not only do these findings help us appreciate the reasons for the rapid rise in obesity, this novel model will allow us to understand the underlying mechanisms and should provide fertile opportunity for translational type research,'' he added.

The results also demonstrate that high levels of adiposity (body fat) occur in the offspring of obese mothers despite consuming similar calories as their lean-offspring counterparts and that offspring obesity is associated with insulin resistance.

UNI XC PD AS1638

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