Parental Weight Changes as Key Predictors of Child Weight Changes

schedule 2 min read
Topic(s): Growth & Development Gut Microbiota Malnutrition

The increasing prevalence of overweight and obesity in children in both developed and developing countries[1] has spawned research investigating modifiable predictors of excessive weight gain in childhood. Excess weight in childhood is linked to many adverse health consequences, a wide range of serious complications, as well as an increased risk of premature illnesses and death later in life; all these issues are clear public-health concerns.[2] The rapid rise in childhood overweight emphasizes the importance of environmental factors on this issue.[2–4] Family influences - particularly parental influences - are the primary environmental components that researchers have evaluated in relation to the weight of children. Parents are the key agents of behaviour changes in their families as well as role models for their children's physical appearance and health.[5] Although a long-term study suggests that parents might not be as successful as their children in weight maintenance, parents who participate in family-based pediatric weight controldo lose weight.[6] A correlation between the obesity of children and that of their parents exists.[7,8] Numerous studies have shown that parental obesity can increase the risk of a child becoming obese.[7–10]

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