Can Your Prenatal Habits Cause Childhood Obesity?

Healthy pregnant womanA healthy lifestyle is encouraged during pregnancy, as choices of the mother can directly affect the health of the infant long after birth.

Childhood obesity is a growing health problem which affects one in every three children. Studies have found that excessive weight gained during pregnancy and smoking can be contributing factors in juvenile obesity.

It is important to maintain a healthy weight while pregnant, because excessive weight gain can affect the baby’s birth weight. Women who become obese during pregnancy are more likely to have bigger babies. Research indicates that infants with high birth weights run a risk in becoming obese as children. Consult a medical professional to discuss tools that are useful in weight control. Dietary counseling and exercise regimens compatible with patient condition and lifestyle may be recommended.

Pregnant women should not smoke. Maternal smoking can cause low intrauterine growth, which at times result in accelerated postnatal growth and childhood obesity. Physicians highly encourage smoking cessation in the earlier stages of pregnancy, but it is never too late to quit. The pregnancy will be improved the sooner the mother quits and the chances of carrying a healthy baby to full term will be greater.

Maintaining good health while pregnant promotes a healthy birth. Receiving early and regular prenatal care reduces the risk of complications for infants. To make an appointment for prenatal care at Jamaica Hospital Women’s Health Center, please call 718 291 3276.


All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.