Study Shows Obesity Starts Before Age One - FamilyEducation

Study Shows Obesity Starts Before Age One

January 04,2011

I was a chubby baby. I mean, who wasn't? "Baby fat"" is a common (and adorable) part of infancy.

But a new study is saying that many babies have too much of that adorable roly-poly chubbiness and are, in fact, considered obese.

That's right. Many babies are no longer toting around "baby fat"-- they're just plain old obese.

According to the most recent issue of the Journal of Health Promotion, 32 percent of 9 month old babies are already overweight or obese. And, according to the same study, the trend continues as the babies grow older, with 34 percent of those same babies falling the same category when they hit the age of two.

Researchers used growth charts provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to compare the baby's growth to the standardized curve.

I do think it's important to point out that the CDC now recommends growth charts provided by the World Health Organization (WHO).

This new research is the latest in what seems to be a worrying trend-- obesity hitting children at younger and younger ages. And the numbers aren't encouraging-- according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, childhood obesity has tripled over the past three decades.

I still think roly-poly chubbiness is an adorable part of infancy, but childhood obesity is a real threat, and it's important for families to start teaching good eating habits at an early age.

Feeding your baby can be frustrating and confusing. Without your baby being able to communicate with words, it's hard to know when he has had enough. Our resources can help answer some of your questions.

And it's never too early to start talking to your kids about good nutrition. Involving your kids in the kitchen is a great way to start teaching them the importance of good nutrition.

And if you're child is a picky eater, there are ways to sneak some extrea veggies into his favorite foods without him ever knowing.

And don't forget that eating healthy at snack time is just as important as it is at meal times.

So tell us-- what do you think? Do you think childhood obesity starts as early as this study suggests? Do you think too many children are overweight? How do you talk to your kids about good nutrition?