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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 183-184

Maternal obesity and its impact on early childhood obesity

Medical Research Center, Kasturba Health Society, Ville Parle West, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Date of Submission01-Sep-2014
Date of Decision15-Sep-2014
Date of Acceptance16-Sep-2014
Date of Web Publication19-Sep-2014

Correspondence Address:
Suparna S De
Medical Research Center, Kasturba Health Society, 17, Khandubhai Desai Road, Ville Parle (W), Mumbai - 400 056, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2347-9906.141153

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How to cite this article:
De SS. Maternal obesity and its impact on early childhood obesity. J Obes Metab Res 2014;1:183-4

How to cite this URL:
De SS. Maternal obesity and its impact on early childhood obesity. J Obes Metab Res [serial online] 2014 [cited 2019 Sep 23];1:183-4. Available from: http://www.jomrjournal.org/text.asp?2014/1/3/183/141153

With the increasing prevalence of childhood and adolescent obesity worldwide, research is being focused on the cause and progress of obesity in these groups, and steps are being taken to prevent it. Apart from changing lifestyles and food habits, genetic and epigenetic factors are also major contributors towards obesity. Recent research shows that the maternal obesity during pregnancy not only leads to short-term complications in both mother and child, but also make offsprings susceptible to cardiometabolic complications, dysregulation of metabolism, including glucose/insulin homoeostasis, and development of hypertension and vascular dysfunction, later in life. Therefore, this time in Research's Digest section, I have tried to cover some recent studies on maternal obesity and its impact on early childhood obesity.

Seneviratne SN, Parry GK, McCowan LM, Ekeroma A, Jiang Y,Gusso1 S, et al. Antenatal exercise in overweight and obese women and its effects on offspring and maternal health: Design and rationale of the improving maternal and progeny obesity via exercise randomized controlled trial. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth. 2014;14:148.

This article, very well emphasizes on the importance of antenatal exercise and its effects on the health outcomes in overweight and obese mothers and their offspring. Seneviratne et al. through a two-arm parallel randomized controlled clinical trial conducted in Auckland, New Zealand, have shown that, regular moderate-intensity exercise during the second half of pregnancy will result in improved maternal and offspring outcomes, including a reduction in birth weight and adiposity in the offspring, which may be protective against obesity in later life.

Hamilton JK, Odrobina1 E, Yin1 J, Hanley AJ, Zinman B, Retnakaran R. Maternal insulin sensitivity during pregnancy predicts infant weight gain and adiposity at 1 year of age. Obesity. 2010;18(2):340-6.

It has emerged from recent studies that there is an impact of fetal environmental exposures on the future development of obesity. Working on these lines, Hamilton et al. designed a cohort study in which 301 women underwent oral glucose tolerance testing for assessment of glucose tolerance status and insulin sensitivity (ISOGTT) in pregnancy. Their infants underwent anthropometric assessment at 12 months of age, including the determination of weight gain in the first year of life and the sum of skinfold thickness - a measure of infant adiposity. This study showed that independent of maternal glucose tolerance status; maternal insulin resistance during pregnancy is associated with increased infant weight gain and adiposity over the first year of life. These results are very well justified with the supportive discussion of mechanisms involved behind them.

Scott C, Andersen CT, Valdez N, Mardones F, Nohr EA, Poston L, et al. No global consensus: a cross-sectional survey of maternal weight policies. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth. 2014;14:167.

Clinical guidelines are addressing healthy weight before, during, and after pregnancy have been introduced in some countries; however, currently systematic accounting for these policies have not been conducted. This study was done to compare maternal weight guidelines across 66 nations. The authors estimated the proportion of countries with guidelines by region, income, and formal or informal policy, and described and compared guideline content, including a rubric to assess presence or absence of four guidelines: encourage healthy preconception weight, antenatal weighing, encourage appropriate gestational gain, and encourage attainment of healthy postpartum weight. Fifty-three countries reported either a formal or informal policy regarding maternal weight. The majority of these policies included guidelines to assess maternal weight at the first prenatal visit (90%), to monitor gestational weight gain during pregnancy (81%), and to provide recommendations to women about healthy gestational weight gain (62%). Guidelines related to preconceptional (42%) and postpartum (13%) weights were less common. Only 8% of countries reported policies that included all 4 fundamental guidelines. Guideline content and rationale varied considerably between countries, and respondents perceived that within their country, policies were not widely known.

King V, Dakin RS, Lincoln L, Patrick WF, Walker BR, Seckl JR, et al. Maternal Obesity has little effect on the immediate offspring but impacts on the next generation. Endocrinology. 2013;154(7):2514-24.

Using a mouse model, the authors have explored the effects of moderate maternal diet-induced obesity on weight gain and glucose-insulin homeostasis in first-generation (F1) and second-generation offsprings. They observed that though the F1 offsprings relatively lacked the effects, there was a clear fetal growth restriction and persistent metabolic changes in otherwise unmanipulated second-generation offspring with effects on birth weight, insulin levels, and hepatic gene expression that were transmitted through both maternal and paternal lines. Their study suggests that the consequences of the current dietary obesity epidemic may also have an impact on the descendants of obese individuals, even when the phenotype of F1 offsprings appears largely unaffected.

Nicholas LM, Rattanatray L, Morrison JL, Kleemann DO, Walker SK, Zhang S, et al. Maternal obesity or weight loss around conception impacts hepatic fatty acid metabolism in the offspring. Obesity. 2014;22:1685-93.

Using an embryo transfer model in a 4-month-old lamb, Nicholas et al. determined the impact of maternal obesity or weight loss during the periconceptional period (before and for 1-week post-conception) on programming of lipid metabolism in the liver of the offspring. A decrease in hepatic PPARα, PGC1α and GCN5 abundance and an increase in hepatic SIRT1 and AMPKα1, AMPKα2 and SREBP1 abundance was recorded in the offspring. These findings highlight the sensitivity of the early embryo to maternal nutrition and the need for dietary interventions that maximize metabolic benefits and minimize metabolic costs for the next generation.


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