Study: U.S. babies are becoming fatter

August 10, 2006

U.S. medical researchers have examined more than 120,000 Massachusetts children under age 6 for 22 years -- and found today's babies are fatter.

The study by Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care shows young children -- especially infants -- are more likely than children in past years to be overweight.

"The obesity epidemic has spared no age group, even our youngest children," said Dr. Matthew Gillman, senior author of the study and associate professor at Harvard.

During the 22-year study, the prevalence of overweight children increased from 6.3 percent to 10 percent -- a 59 percent jump based on weight and height measures. The proportion of children at risk of becoming overweight grew from 11.1 percent to 14.4 percent overall, a 30 percent jump.

Of all the age groups studied, infants had the greatest jump in risk of becoming overweight at 59 percent, and the number of overweight infants increased by 74 percent.

"This information is important to public health because previous studies show that accelerated weight gain in the first few months after birth is associated with obesity later in life," says Gillman.

The study is detailed in the journal Obesity.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Report: Fight fat even in toddlers, preschoolers

Related Stories

Report: Fight fat even in toddlers, preschoolers

June 23, 2011

(AP) -- A food pyramid just for the under-2 set? Contrary to popular belief, children don't usually outgrow their baby fat - and a new report urges steps to help prevent babies, toddlers and preschoolers from getting too ...

Recommended for you

Trade in invasive plants is blossoming

October 3, 2015

Every day, hundreds of different plant species—many of them listed as invasive—are traded online worldwide on auction platforms. This exacerbates the problem of uncontrollable biological invasions.

How much for that Nobel prize in the window?

October 3, 2015

No need to make peace in the Middle East, resolve one of science's great mysteries or pen a masterpiece: the easiest way to get yourself a Nobel prize may be to buy one.

Drone market to hit $10 billion by 2024: experts

October 3, 2015

The market for military drones is expected to almost double by 2024 to beyond $10 billion (8.9 billion euros), according to a report published Friday by specialist defence publication IHS Jane's Intelligence Review.

Fusion reactors 'economically viable' say experts

October 2, 2015

Fusion reactors could become an economically viable means of generating electricity within a few decades, and policy makers should start planning to build them as a replacement for conventional nuclear power stations, according ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.