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The Obesity Epidemic Spreads From Mother to Child

Earlier this year, I warned you about the additional problems pregnant women face when they are obese. One of those unfortunate outcomes -- bearing children who are also obese -- was the result of two recent studies.

In one study, researchers monitored some 800 women whose weight gains were defined as excessive, adequate or inadequate (based on Institute of Medicine parameters). Sadly, only the inadequate weight group had children who, on average, weren't obese by the time they turned age 3.

After reviewing national health records, scientists in the latter study also found a similarly disturbing connection between women who gained excessive amounts of weight during their pregnancies and the incidence of obesity among their kids (ages 2-4).

Starving yourself during your pregnancy on a low-calorie diet doesn't do you or your baby any good either, as it can hasten premature deliveries. The best things you can do for your baby's health and your own:

New Scientist December 1, 2005

EurekAlert November 30, 2005

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