Pathways into and out of overweight and obesity from infancy to mid‐childhood

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Abstract

Objectives To investigate whether high weight in infancy predicts obesity in childhood. Method Data from two UK cohorts (Newcastle Growth and Development N = 795, Gateshead Millennium N = 393) and one Finnish (Tampere N = 1262) were combined. Z scores of weight at 3 and 12 months and body mass index (BMI) at 5 and 8 years were categorized as raised/overweight (1 to <2 SD) or high/obese (≥2 SD). Results The majority of infants with raised or high weight at birth tended to revert to normal by 3 months and to track in the same category from 3 to 12 months. Although infants with high weight were five times more likely to have BMI ≥ 2 SD at 8 years (p < 0.001), only 22% went on to have BMI ≥ 2 SD, while 64% of infants with raised weight had normal BMI at 8 years. Of children with BMI ≥ 2 SD aged 8 years, only 22% had raised weight in infancy and half had BMI ≥ 2 SD for the first time at that age. Conclusions Infants with raised weight in infancy tend to remain so, but most children who go on to have BMI ≥ 2 SD were not unusually heavy infants and the majority of infants with high weight reverted to overweight or normal weight in childhood.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPediatric obesity
Volume13
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jul 2011

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