Chubby babies are universally adorable, but once they are older, it is generally ideal for them to maintain a healthy body weight. According to new studies, however, babies who had been delivered via C-section are more likely to experience childhood obesity.
What you can read in this article:
- Can childhood obesity be linked with C-section?
- Other studies about childhood obesity
- How to prevent it
Can childhood obesity be linked with C-section?
Conducted by experts at the Harvard School of Public Health, the study also said that there is a 15 percent chance that those born via C-section will be more likely to be obese. This is by the time they reach their teenage years.
“Experts think this is mainly because babies removed directly from the womb are never exposed to the beneficial bacteria they would get through a natural birth.
“Passing through the birth canal primes their immune system and helps prepare their metabolism for the rigours of life, scientists think.”
Published in JAMA Pediatrics, the researchers looked into more than 22,000 people at birth. They were then examined when they were aged between nine and 14.
Those who who had been born via C-section were 15 percent more likely to be obese than those who underwent a natural birth.
The researchers revisits the participants when they were aged 20 to 28. They discovered that the connection between C-section and obesity remained, although it dropped to just 10 percent.
Jorge Chavarro is the study’s senior author and associate professor of nutrition and epidemiology. He said that ‘caesarean deliveries are without a doubt a necessary and lifesaving procedure in many cases.’
“But Caesareans also have some known risks to the mother and the newborn. Our findings show that risk of obesity in the offspring could be another factor to consider.”
He also said that the study’s results establishes the “compelling evidence” that there is a connection between Caesarean birth and childhood obesity, and that it’s real.
Meanwhile, according to Dr Daghni Rajasingam, of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the results of the study are interesting but further research needs to go into it.
Doctors also need to inform women about the risks and benefits of C-section.
He also said that in England, the rate of caesarean section is 26.2 percent. It is slowly rising over the last decade. That can be a factor which make childbirth more difficult including; a rise in older mothers and more obese mothers.
“We must remember that in some cases an emergency Caesarean section is carried out to save the life of the mother and/or baby.”
But some researchers has claimed that child obesity has no ties with the caesarian section procedure.
Lumulusog ang anak? 6 ways to open up healthy eating habits to your kids
7 Habits that can cause child obesity
When do babies develop social skills? A guide in helping your child learn how to interact with others
Other studies about childhood obesity
According to a study made by researchers in Sweden, they have observed the records of about 97,000 men who were born between 1982 and 1987.
The study was published in PLOS Medicine, a weekly medical journal stationed at San Francisco, California and Cambridge, United Kingdom.
Researchers studies the numbers regarding the birth method a child was conceived for those who had experienced obesity. For normal birth through vaginal delivery, there was 4.9 percent that the person was overweight.
It was 5.5 percent for elective caesarean section, and 5.6 percent for non-elective caesarean section.
Despite the difference in percentage, they have observed that those pregnant women who has undergone caesarean section had a higher body mass index. Most of them are smokers, and those factors can lead to pre-pregnancy diabetes and higher blood pressure.
Based on that conditions, Viktor Ahlqvist — a researcher in Karolinska Institute — has determined that mothers who has gone through caesarean section should not worry with their child being obese.
“On a large scale, with rigorous controls, we found no association between C-section and obesity in children, somewhat to our surprise.”
Larawan mula sa Pexels
How to prevent it
In the United States, there is a significant 10 percent increase of overweight children aging from 4 to 5 years old. The data is according to Department of Health in New York.
But regardless of the numbers, parents can do something to prevent their children from becoming obese. Here are some of the things to do to help your kids:
Promote a healthy lifestyle
Ensure that your kids will have a healthy and active lifestyle. This includes having nutritious snacks and meals, plus having a physical activity throughout the day.
For their meals, make sure that they will always have one serving of grains, vegetable, fruits, meat, and milk.
Limit their screen time
It would also help if the parents could discourage their kids on eating while watching TV or playing video games. This could lead to overeating.
Limiting them to 1 to 2 hours per day on their screen time can also encourage them to engage in more physical activities.