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Experimental Diabetes Research
Volume 2011, Article ID 985139, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/985139
Research Article

Maternal Behaviors during Pregnancy Impact Offspring Obesity Risk

1Kinesiology Department, California Polytechnic State University, 1 Grand Avenue, San Luis Obispo, CA 93407-0386, USA
2Department of Psychiatry and Weight Control and Diabetes Research Center, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and The Miriam Hospital, 197 Richmond Street, Providence, RI 02906, USA
3Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Women and Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, 101 Dudley Street, Providence, RI 02905, USA
4School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley, 140 Warren Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
5Statistics Department, California Polytechnic State University, 1 Grand Avenue, San Luis Obispo, CA 93407, USA

Received 15 June 2011; Revised 5 August 2011; Accepted 6 August 2011

Academic Editor: Susan Ozanne

Copyright © 2011 Suzanne Phelan 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.

Abstract

This study investigated the effects of maternal changes during pregnancy in diet, exercise, and psychosocial factors on offspring weight parameters at birth and 6 months. In overweight/obese (OW/OB; n=132) mothers, greater % kcal from sweets early in pregnancy was the strongest, independent predictor of higher weight for age (WFA) (beta =0.19; P=0.004), higher odds of macrosomia (OR = 1.1 (1.0–1.2); P=0.004) andWFA >90th percentile at birth (OR = 1.2 (1.1–1.3); P=0.002) and higher WFA at 6 months (beta =0.30; P=0.002). In normal weight (n=153) mothers, higher intake of soft drinks was the strongest predictor of higher offspring WFA at birth (beta = 0.16; P=0.04) but not at 6 months. Prenatal physical activity, depressive symptoms, and sleep-related variables did not significantly predict offspring weight outcomes. Mothers’ eating behaviors during pregnancy, especially intake of sweets in OW/OB mothers, may have a lasting effect on child weight.