October 27, 2017

Parental Obesity Is Linked To Delays In Child Development

parental obesity child development

Obesity is linked to both male and female infertility and miscarriage. Obesity during pregnancy is also linked to pregnancy complications and a higher incidence of metabolic disorders in children. A recent study published in “Pediatrics” from the NIH found that parental obesity is linked to delays in child development. Compared to children of normal weight mothers, children of obese mothers were nearly 70% more likely to have failed tests of fine motor skill by age 3. Children of obese fathers were 75% more likely to fail tests indicating how well they were able to relate and interact with others by age 3. Children with two obese parents were nearly three times more likely to fail problem solving tests by age 3. Why this occurs is unknown. Animal studies suggest that obesity during pregnancy may promote inflammation which could adversely affect fetal brain development. Obesity may also affect the expression of genes in sperm. Getting in better shape for pregnancy is not only good for the establishment and maintenance of pregnancy but also for your child’s health and development.

If you have questions or need help on how to achieve healthy weight for pregnancy, please contact us! We are here for you and can help put together an individualized care plan to meet your personal needs.

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Joseph A. Hill, III, M.D. Board-Certified in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility