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International Journal of Pediatrics
Volume 2012, Article ID 478610, 6 pages
Research Article

Adolescent Metabolic Syndrome Risk Is Increased with Higher Infancy Weight Gain and Decreased with Longer Breast Feeding

1Division of Child Development and Community Health, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0927, USA
2Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA), University of Chile, El Líbano 5524, 138-11 Santiago, Chile
3Center for Human Growth and Development and Department of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases, University of Michigan, 300 North Ingalls, 10th Floor, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-5406, USA

Received 15 December 2011; Revised 1 March 2012; Accepted 18 May 2012

Academic Editor: Ricardo D. Uauy

Copyright © 2012 Kim Khuc et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Prevalence of the metabolic syndrome is increasing in pediatric age groups worldwide. Meeting the criteria for the metabolic syndrome puts children at risk for later cardiovascular and metabolic disease. Methods. Using linear regression, we examined the association between infant weight gain from birth to 3 months and risk for the metabolic syndrome among 16- to 17-year-old Chilean adolescents (n=357), accounting for the extent of breastfeeding in infancy and known covariates including gender, birth weight, and socioeconomic status. Results. Participants were approximately half male (51%), born at 40 weeks of gestation weighing 3.5 kg, and 48% were exclusively breastfed for 90 days. Factors independently associated with increased risk of metabolic syndrome in adolescence were faster weight gain in the first 3 months of life (B=0.16, P<0.05) and male gender (B=0.24, P<0.05). Breastfeeding as the sole source of milk for 90 days was associated with significantly decreased risk of metabolic syndrome (B=0.16). Conclusion. This study adds to current knowledge about early infant growth and breastfeeding and their long-term health effects.