Authors of a study published by the American Heart Association reportedly suggest that weight gain during the first few weeks of life may program an individual for future weight problems.
"Our main finding was that rapid weight gain during the first week of life in this population of healthy, European-American, formula-fed infants was associated with being overweight two to three decades later," said lead author Nicolas Stettler, M.D., M.S.C.E., a pediatric nutrition specialist at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.How's this for an alternative hypothesis: Babies who gain weight more easily grow up to be adults who gain weight more easily. Or is that too obvious?
"It suggests that there may be a critical period in that first week during which the body's physiology may be programmed to develop chronic disease throughout life," Dr. Stettler added.
"Our findings also point toward new potential targets for preventing obesity," he said. "If these results are confirmed by other studies, they may lead to interventions in newborns to help prevent long-term development of obesity."