Targeting four modifiable maternal and infant risk factors may make a large impact on reducing childhood obesity, researchers found.
The four factors were maternal smoking during pregnancy, gestational weight gain, breastfeeding duration, and infant sleep duration, according to Matthew Gillman, MD, of Harvard Medical School in Boston.
At age 7, children with adverse levels of all four risk factors had a substantially greater risk of obesity than those with healthy levels of all four (28% versus 4%). Gillman reported those findings at the Obesity Society meeting here.
“These four factors, which are potentially modifiable, explain a large proportion of obesity in childhood, and the implication is that, if we can mount interventions to change these things, we can go a long way toward preventing childhood obesity,” Gillman said.
If we can modify these four factors, then it will be a worthwhile attempt for better baby health. Of course, more study is required.