WEDNESDAY, Nov. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) — A child’s high and increasing body mass index (BMI) between ages 2 and 6 years is strongly associated with maternal prepregnancy weight, according to a study published online Nov. 5 in Pediatric Obesity.

Xinhui Wang, Ph.D., from Kaiser Permanente Southern California in Pasadena, and colleagues analyzed data from 71,892 children born at Kaiser Permanente Southern California hospitals (2007 to 2011) with complete information on maternal risk factors. Latent BMI growth trajectories from ages 2 to 6 years were evaluated based on their relationship to maternal prepregnancy weight and diabetes status.

The researchers identified three BMI trajectory groups: stable low BMI (group 1; 59 percent); stable median BMI (group 2; 35 percent); and high and increasing BMI over time (group 3; 6 percent). Relative to groups 1 and 2 combined, maternal prepregnancy factors associated with being in group 3 were: obesity (adjusted odds ratio [OR], 5.6; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 5.1 to 6.2), overweight (OR, 2.4; 95 percent CI, 2.2 to 2.7), type 1 diabetes (OR, 2.1; 95 percent CI, 1.2 to 3.7), type 2 diabetes (OR, 1.6; 95 percent CI, 1.4 to 1.8), gestational diabetes requiring medication (OR, 1.4; 95 percent CI, 1.3 to 1.6), gestational diabetes not requiring medication (OR, 1.1; 95 percent CI, 1.0 to 1.3), excessive gestational weight gain (OR, 1.3; 95 percent CI, 1.2 to 1.4), and breastfeeding no more than six months (OR, 1.2; 95 percent CI, 1.2 to 1.3).

“Our results highlight the importance of public health efforts to reduce maternal obesity and provide important information to understand the impact of maternal diabetes during pregnancy on childhood obesity,” the authors write.

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