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Baby Fat May Not Be So Cute After All

by Roni Caryn Rabin, New York Times, March 23, 2010

Most anti-obesity efforts for youth have targeted schoolchildren and teenagers‚ but some studies show that interventions during the toddler years‚ infancy‚ and in utero may prevent obesity and lower the risk of diabetes.

One in 10 children under age two years is considered overweight, and the percentage of children ages two to five who are obese increased from 5 percent in 1980 to 12.4 percent in 2006. Last year, an Institute of Medicine study began looking at obesity prevention in children ages zero to five years and examining sleeping, feeding patterns‚ and physical activity. One study found a link between gestational diabetes in the mother and diabetes in children among Pima Indians. According to the data‚ children born after the mother developed type 2 diabetes had a higher body-mass index in childhood‚ and they had a nearly four times higher risk of developing diabetes as siblings born prior to the diabetes diagnosis.

New York Times (03/23/10) P. D5

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